I am 19 weeks pregnant, i was hurt on the job due to lifting. My obgyn gave me a lifting restriction of 20lbs or less, witch there is plenty I can do at work still. Well my first day back after the injury I gave my employer my dr. restrictions and they said I couldnt work there untill I can lift 50lbs witch would be after I have the baby and gave me the papper work for short term disability witch I only 65% of my wages. Can they legally do this to me?
1 Answer from Attorneys
Hi. I am a Missouri workers' compensation and disability attorney that handles matters throughout all parts of the state. I am sorry to hear about the injury you sustained, and for the way your employer appears to be dealing with your injury.
First off, an employer is required to make reasonable accomodations to allow you to work, particularly when your restrictions are not excessive, which appears to be the case here. The ADA laws require that employers accomodate your restrictions, and you may have a claim under these laws. However, more detail would be needed, including the type of job duties you have. If the majority of your job duties require lifting of 50lbs or greater, it is possible that your employer cannot make accomodations for you, but I doubt that is the case.
Furthermore, the FMLA (Family Medical Leave Act) allows your job to be protected for a period of time when you are unable to work, due to illness, or doctor restrictions. However, unless you fill out the correct paperwork, and exercise your rights under the FMLA, your job can be in jeopardy, and the employer can make a decision to terminate you if they feel your restrictions keep you from performing the job. You have certain rights and the ability to obtain legal protection for your job (where they cannot terminate you), but the employer often will not inform you of how this process works. It would be necessary to review the paperwork that you completed to determine whether you have job protection or not currently.
Finally, under the workers' compensation laws, in addition to payment for any time missed from work due to doctor restrictions, you are also entitled to a lump sum amount of compensation, which can be a significant amount, if your injury is longer term. Again, further information would be needed to provide an estimate of the amount of compensation you are entitled to.
I hope this helps to some extent perhaps. For your convenience, I can be reached via e-mail at: [email protected], or by phone. Our website is: www.harvathmissouriillinoislawyers.com. Thank you.
NOTE: This answer is for educational purposes and does not contain legal advice. The use of this site does not create an attorney-client relationship or privilege between the user and the attorney responding.