Yes, you can continue to receive workers’ compensation benefits in Massachusetts even if you are terminated, released or fired by your employer while on workers compensation. Of course, this is true provided you continue to qualify for workers’ compensation. This means that you remain temporarily disabled, either totally or partially, and/or you require reasonable and necessary medical treatment that is related to your work accident.
Workers’ Compensation Basics in Massachusetts
Most workers in Massachusetts are covered by workers’ compensation with a few exceptions. If a worker is injured in a work-related accident, he or she is entitled to benefits from their employer’s workers’ compensation insurance policy. The benefits available include disability or incapacity benefits and medical benefits.
The disability benefits will replace a portion of your lost pay if you are disabled for five or more days. If your work accident causes you to be totally disabled, you can receive 60% of your average weekly wage. If you are only partially disabled and can still work, but cannot earn your average weekly wage before the work accident, you qualify for partial disability. The maximum partial disability you can receive is no more than 75% of your weekly total disability rate.
The medical benefits will cover the full cost and expenses of reasonable, medically necessary treatment that is related to your work injury. This means that if you are hurt on the job, your employer’s workers’ compensation insurance policy will pay for all of your medical bills and expenses.
Example of an Employee on Workers’ Compensation that Was Terminated
We represented a woman who was employed as a certified nursing assistant in Dedham, Massachusetts. While at work one day she was helping a patient maneuver on to a bed. In the process, our client injured her back. She took all recommended steps for her work accident and reported the accident and got medical attention right away. She was diagnosed with a herniated disc in her lumbar spine and was out of work for quite a while. Because of her injury and disability, she collected workers’ compensation benefits for over two years.
After a year of being out of work, her employer terminated her. When our client received the letter from her employer informing her that she was being released, she was very concerned about losing workers’ compensation. We reassured her that she will continue to receive her workers’ compensation checks even though she was terminated by her employer. Also, worker’ compensation continued to pay for her treatment for her back injury. With bills to pay and children to support, this client was relieved to hear that she will continue to get her disability checks.
Do You Have Questions About A Work Injury?
If you, or someone you know, has been injured on the job in Massachusetts and you have questions or are confused about what to do, feel free to call us at (508) 879-3500 or contact us online. We will answer your questions and evaluate your case for free.