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Fired while out on Workers Comp?

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What is the name of your state? California

My employeer fired me when I gave them the note from my doctor who was taking me off work so that I could have surgery for a work related injury. Now the employer denying that I ever worked for them and a personnel file is no where to be found. Now what?


Senior Member
That's bizarre. Who is denying that you worked there and to whom are they denying it? How long had you worked there? Was this the first notice the employer had that you had work related injury?
I guess I should have given more history.

Original comp claim filed in 99 from a previous employer. Relocated to a new area in 02 and worked for new employer for 6 months. At my job interview for this new employer I disclosed to them that I have carpel tunnel and tendenitious. New employer stated that my work would require very little computer use and that it should all be fine. Four months later I ended up being the only person in the office, which is usually a 4 person office. The first person left (she had been working under the table while collecting welfare) the second person went on a 4 week cruise/vacation with the CEO of the company and the third person took 3 weeks off. Since I was left to do the work of 4 people, I had a relapse in my hands and my doctor took me out of work to do re-constructive surgery. The surgery and TD was paid for under my original 99 comp claim.

Now the comp carrier from my previous employer is saying that this is accumulative trama and that the new employer needs to share in the responsibility. The new employer states that I have never worked there and that they have no idea who I am. I filed for unemployment just to get the verification that I had worked there and EDD agreed with me that I was in fact an employee. Now that I am about to be released to return to work, I don't have a job. Isn't the new employer liable and have to offer my job back?


Senior Member
From what you describe of your workplace, they don't sound like ethical people so it's not a big surprise they're trying to skirt liability for your claim. In any event, that aspect of your claim doesn't really involve you. The WC carrier with your former employer will subrogate the claim (i.e. duke it out) with your current employer and their WC carrier. If you have any paystubs from your current place of employment or a W-2 from them for 2003 (which they legally have to provide by January 30th), that's certainly ample proof that you worked there.

As to the requirement that they make a job for you now that you've been released to return to work, the answer is probably not. You only worked there for six months (plus this employer may not be large enough) so FMLA doesn't apply. You *might* have a claim under your State's WC reg's for "wrongful refusal to rehire" but you'll need to contact a WC attorney or contact the State's WC division to discuss that.
It get's even worse

When I was hired by the new employer it was to replace the controller who retires next month. My original title was HR Administrator/Asst. Controller and my interm job was to bring them into compliance with the current labor laws. (it was bad!) I realize that if I went back to work there it would be a hostile environment. The real problem is that they refuse to file a comp claim for me. Unfortunately that was my job while I was there and prior to that they would just pay them medical bills and then fire anyone who got injured on the job.


Senior Member
Jenni, if you mean hostile environment in the sense that it might be unpleasant or tense if you return, yes. If you mean hostile environment in the prohibited sense, then no.

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