Retaliation for Filing Workers’ Compensation Claim

by Joel Christiansen

Oregon law prohibits certain employers from retaliating against an employee because the worker filed or participated in a workers’ compensation claim.

ORS 659A.040 applies to employers who employ six or people:

  • It is an unlawful employment practice for an employer to discriminate against a worker with respect to hire or tenure or any term or condition of employment because the worker has applied for benefits or invoked or utilized the procedures provided for in [Oregon’s workers’ compensation laws] or has given testimony under the provisions of those laws.

In addition to ORS 659A.040, OAR 839-006-0100 protects an even broader class of individuals:

  • It is an unlawful employment practice for an employer to discriminate against a worker injured on the job who applies for benefits under or in other ways invokes or uses the Oregon Workers’ Compensation system. An employer may not discriminate against workers who have testified, are about to give testimony, or who are perceived as having testified in connection with Oregon Workers’ Compensation procedures or [other relevant] civil procedures.

Oregon employees who are involved with workers’ compensation claims may also have other statutory, contract, and common law rights. Whether you are an employee or employer dealing with a workers’ compensation claim, contacting competent counsel is usually a good idea.

Please be advised that the above-listed statutes and rules are informational only. Since laws are always changing and will apply differently in different situations, you are encouraged to contact an attorney for help with any particular concerns.