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Handling layoffs with workers’ comp claims pending

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in Employee Benefits Program,Employment Law,Human Resources

Q. We need to lay off an entire shift at our assembly plant. A few of these workers are off work or on temporary light-duty jobs as a result of on-the-job injuries. They have workers’ comp claims pending. If we lay off the entire shift, can we lay off the injured workers as well?

A. Yes. Employees receiving worker’s comp benefits are not entitled to greater job protection than those who are not.

On the other hand, you cannot choose someone for layoff because they sought worker’s compensation benefits. That would be unlawful retaliation and would give rise to a tort claim if it occurred.

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