A former worker at Mosaic Life Care is suing the St. Joseph hospital for firing her. She claims that her discharge was done in retaliation for reporting a workplace injury.
As we have discussed in earlier blog posts, she will have an uphill battle under a workers’ compensation law that has been stilted in favor of her employer.
St. Joseph Hospital Worker Claims She Was Fired for Reporting an Injury
According to the worker, she was fired from her position as a medical technician at Mosaic Life Care after only three months on the job. She claims she was lifting boxes and pulled a disc in her back. The injury led to severe stenosis, and her doctor told her to stay out of work.
The worker says that she notified Mosaic immediately and sent in medical documentation excusing her absences. She also asked to be moved to a less intensive position while she recovered.
However, less than 24 hours after her request, she got an email telling her that she was being let go.
The hospital then tried to end her short-term disability payments.
Fired Workers Now Have to Find the “Smoking Gun”
Retaliatory discharges are a serious problem in workers’ compensation law. If bosses could fire workers for reporting a workplace injury or filing for workers’ compensation, the whole law would become meaningless. No one would admit to being hurt while on the job. Workers would fight through pain, their injuries would get worse, and their quality of life would deteriorate all because they wanted to keep their position.
Missouri’s workers’ compensation law protects workers by forbidding employers from firing them out of retaliation for exercising their workers’ compensation rights.
Proving when a worker got fired because they are exercising their rights, as opposed to getting fired for a legitimate reason, can be tricky.
In Missouri, there used to have to be a very close causal connection between a workers’ compensation claim and a discharge. In 2014, the Missouri Supreme Court decided that the workers’ compensation claim only had to contribute to the decision to let a worker go for it to be retaliatory.
Now, though, changes to the law require the workers’ compensation claim to be the “motivating factor” behind the discharge. The devil is in the details, though: It is up to the fired worker to show that their claim was the motivating factor for their termination. Finding evidence of that “smoking gun” can be extremely difficult.
St. Joseph Workers’ Compensation Lawyers at the Smith Law Office
The personal injury and workers’ compensation lawyers at the Smith Law Office can help. With their experience holding employers accountable, they have learned how to find the evidence of retaliation that you need to show that you were fired in retaliation for raising your workers’ compensation rights.
Call their St. Joseph law office at (816) 875-9373 or contact them online.