Workplace Bullying – An Unfortunate Side Effect of Filing a Workers’ Compensation Claim
The Workers’ Compensation system, in a perfect scenario, should fairly compensate workers who are injured on the job. Unfortunately, due to the fact that worker’s compensation was created by and for employers in order to minimize lawsuits filed against them, this is not always the case.
To an injured worker who has to file a claim, and initiate a seemingly endless barrage of bureaucracy, the process can seem overwhelming and unending. Also, many workers’ compensation claims are often initially denied.
Bullying of a Workers’ Compensation Claimant
Lawsuits in courtrooms are public knowledge, with any potential harassment or retaliations being on record. In workers’ compensation claims, however, cases remain private, with employer misdeeds buried in secrecy, along with any further psychological damage caused to the claimant.
Also, although workers’ compensation recognizes some physical-psychological claims, these stress related damages are extremely difficult, if not impossible, to receive compensation for.
Surveillance of Workers’ Comp Claimants
Surveillance of injured workers connotes distrust. Employers have gone so far as to videotape and follow workers, accusing them of lying about severity, or faking their injuries altogether. Regardless of physician testimony and subsequent surgeries for said injuries, this employer ‘proof’ can cause irreparable damage to a person’s case.
Other methods of employer harassment can include:
- Denial of valid claims
- Issuing disability checks late
- Intentional refusal to purchase insurance for employees
- Making examples of employees who have filed claims