The Massachusetts Workers’ Compensation Act (the Act) safeguards employees by prohibiting employers from taking adverse employment actions in retaliation against those seeking workers’ compensation benefits. If employers violate this provision, they may be liable for damages in tort to the affected employees. Recently, a Massachusetts court discussed what evidence a plaintiff must offer to prove their termination constitutes retaliation for filing a workers’ compensation claim. If you’ve suffered an injury while on the job, it’s advisable to consult a Massachusetts workers’ compensation attorney to assess potential benefits you may be able to recover.
The Facts of the Case
Reportedly, the plaintiff had been employed by the defendant as a Supplemental Driver Sales Representative (DSR) before transitioning to a regular DSR, which involved physically demanding tasks such as loading and unloading heavy freight. As part of the plaintiff’s employment agreement, he had signed a document stipulating that they wouldn’t pursue legal action regarding their employment more than six months after an incident or termination.
Allegedly, the plaintiff sustained a job-related shoulder injury sustained in 2005, after which he filed a workers’ compensation claim. Consequently, the defendant initiated a process to reassign the plaintiff to a different role. However, the plaintiff was terminated in 2006 for not securing the necessary medical certification to resume his DSR responsibilities. Ultimately, the plaintiff settled his workers’ compensation claim with the defendant for a sum of $50,000. He then filed a lawsuit against the defendant, setting forth several claims, including workers’ compensation and intentional infliction of emotional distress. The defendant moved for summary judgment. Continue reading →