Q: What can workers comp do for me after I’ve been terminated? Employer submitted my form after my termination.
A: If you were hurt before you were terminated and the employer had knowledge, then you should have no problem proceeding with a WC claim. If you employer was not aware of your injury until after you were terminated, then a new set of rules apply. Generally for this type of case you will need an attorney. At a minimum make sure to file a DWC-1 with your employer.
Workers Compensation INSURANCE must provide 'reasonable treatment' and -- if appropriate -- temporary and permanent disability payments.
Trouble is, if the 'comp clinic' releases you to modified duty, you won't get work and you won't get Temporary Disability.
So it is crucial that you switch doctors away from the 'clinic' hand-picked by the adjuster to a real physician who will order you Temporarily totally Disability until you are fully ready to resume full duties (then you can apply for Unemployment insurance until you find work)
tHE WORKERS COMPENSATION APPEALS BOARD can hear a petition that you were terminated in retaliation for requesting workers comp benefits. If you have REAL PROOF (documents, emails, eye witnesses) that the only reason you were terminated was because of the work injury, Labor Code 132a lets the judge order you reinstated into your old job, and and extra 50% award on your permanent disability findings (so if you had permanent disability of $2000, the judge would order the company to pay an extra $1000 out of its pocket as punishment, plus take you back to work).
LC132a Petitions are tough, so when shopping for a lawyer, insist on seeing a sample 132a Petition. Paralegals and inexperienced counsel won't be able to show you one, and you'll know to move on. a LOT of lawyers will sign you up to represent you on the injury then write you that they will not represent on the 132a petition, for you to go get separate counsel on the 132a petition, but no attorney will take on a 132a petition by itself...it's 3 times the hours as the basic injury claim for 1/3 the money. So make absolute certain that any attorney you sign with WILL do the 132a petition too.
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