Stabbed in the Back: Dealing with Betrayal after a Workers’ Comp Claim

So you worked in drywall for Ricky for eight years. You put in overtime when other workers didn’t show. You covered Ricky’s butt every time he overslept. And now, when you’re injured and need him most, he turns his back on you. Workplace betrayal – it happens.

Dealing with betrayal after a workers’ compensation injury or disease is no fun. After building trusting relationships with the boss and co-workers, you expect to be treated fairly in return, especially when you suffer an on-the-job injury or contract an occupational disease. In North Carolina, especially in smaller companies, the boss – not some big human resources department – reports and files the workers’ compensation forms and describes the accident or situation to the insurance adjuster. Like it or not, the boss often ends up steering the ship. Think you’re the victim of back stabbing?

HERE ARE SOME COMMON SIGNS YOUR BOSS MAY BE BETRAYING YOU:

  • “Sorry…we don’t have workers’ comp insurance.”

At Ricci Law Firm, we wish we had a nickel for every time we’ve heard this one. And many times, it just isn’t true. Employers often hide from injured workers the true name of the insured company, just in hopes of saving a few bucks in increased insurance premiums. In other cases, the company really is uninsured, even though North Carolina law requires insurance for any employer with three or more employees, including the owner. In either case, a workers’ compensation specialist attorney at Ricci Law Firm can help you get to the bottom of this common claim and possibly recover benefits anyway.

  • “You’re not a true employee.”

Your boss told you that you’re just an “independent contractor?” Yes, at Ricci Law Firm, we’ve heard that one, too. Sometimes it is true, but often it is not. Regardless of what the boss says, the North Carolina laws covering whether a worker is an employee or an independent contractor are straightforward and objective. Too many workers, paid by 1099 or by cash, just shrug and walk away when they hear this excuse from the boss. Protect yourself from this type of betrayal. If you think you are an employee, even if you are not paid as one, contact a workers’ compensation attorney to investigate.

  • “Accident? What accident?”

The ultimate betrayal is when the boss plays dumb, and at Ricci Law Firm, we see it all the time. “He probably got hurt at home,” they say, or “she’s just looking for money,” or “he fell but he wasn’t even hurt.” Sometimes the boss even colludes with other workers to make sure everyone denies that an accident or injury happened. Outstanding legal advocacy includes thorough factual investigations, so if you hear this line, make sure you are represented by an attorney willing to dig deep. Surveillance cameras, witness statements, family members, ambulance notes, emergency room reports…good lawyering may be able to save the day if you are faced with this type of betrayal.

The key to keeping your workers’ compensation claim alive when faced with a back-stabbing boss? An attorney willing to fight for your rights. If you contracted a disease at work or were injured on the job and are being treated unfairly, contact a workers’ compensation attorney at Ricci Law Firm.

Workers’ Compensation Lawyer NOW serving Greenville, Durham, Goldsboro, and Raleigh

I’m Brian Ricci, a workers’ compensation lawyer serving Greenville and Raleigh. If you or a loved one has sustained an injury at work, please call me at (252) 777-2222 or 800-387-6406 for free, friendly advice.

I am a longtime member of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum.

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