North Carolina is an at-will employment state, which means employers are not required to provide notice of employment termination, or reasons for their decision. Employees have the same responsibilities. It is illegal for employers to discriminate injured employees. The North Carolina workers’ compensation system exists to protect injured workers. If you were injured at work and filed a workers’ comp claim, it is against the law for your employer to fire you for this reason.
Your employer would have to prove they fired you for reasons unrelated to your Dunn work injuries. If, prior to your injuries, you have a poor performance record, have missed excessive time at work, or complaints were made about your work by management, clients, or personnel, your employer will have a strong case to show their termination of your employment was not as a result of your injuries.
Our Dunn workers’ comp lawyers encourage you to contact the Department of Labor immediately if your employer fired you because of your injuries. Injured workers must notify the DOL within six months of this violation. Our Dunn workers’ comp lawyers help injured workers with this process.
However, your employer is not under any obligation to keep your position open and available to you while you are out of work and receiving workers’ compensation benefits. If your injuries prevent you from working, your employer may need to fill your position to keep business running. This is not always the case. Employers are usually interested in keeping your position open for you – read more about that in our blog post “If I am on workers’ comp in NC, does my employer have to keep my job?”