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California workers cannot be fired for workplace injuries

California workers who are injured in workplace accidents will have a litany of concerns that must be addressed. An accident on the job can leave a person and his or her family wondering about the future and how to handle various issues. Although workers' compensation is in place to give assistance and provide protections to people who have been hurt while working, there are other laws and potential benefits that also protect workers. Understanding these other options is essential after a work accident, as they can further assist in the recovery process.

Often, workers are worried that they will lose their jobs because of their injury. People who have been hurt should be aware that this is illegal. It is also illegal for an employer to punish a worker in any way for filing a workers' compensation claim after an on-the-job accident. Workers who testify on behalf of an employee who was hurt are similarly protected from retaliation.

The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) along with the California Family Rights Act (CFRA) are useful in these instances. A workplace that has 50 or more employees must generally give workers unpaid leave for as much as 12 weeks without it costing the person his or her job if it is due to a serious medical issue. Workers who do not recover fully from their injuries can use the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and the California Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA) to act against an employer who commits this type of discrimination.

People who are hurt on the job are not immune to forms of illegal behaviors on the part of their employers if they seek workers' compensation and other benefits. If an employer tries to fire a worker, or commits other acts that are illegal when a worker is seeking to use available benefits, a legal professional who is experienced in assisting clients who have suffered workplace injuries may be able to help.

Source:, "Chapter 2. After You Get Hurt on the Job, page 8," accessed on Oct. 9, 2017

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