I was off on medical leave for arm surgery, and when I returned to work 3 months later, I gave my supervisor my doctor’s note saying that I could not lift more than 25 lbs.

But my supervisor ripped up the doctor’s note, and had me lift 40+ lbs. which resulted in my tearing a tendon in my arm, and another surgery. While I was at home recuperating, I got a call from work saying “Your services are no longer needed”, and when I asked what that meant she said “You’re fired.”

My employer has not paid any of my hospital bills, and they are mounting. Should I contact the EEOC? Do I have a case????

Posted  08-04-2010

Ann Kiernan replies:

Since your tendon was injured at work, that surgery and any follow-up should have been covered 100% by workers’ compensation. You should not have to pay anything for your doctors’ visits, hospital stay, medication, or physical therapy.

You should immediately meet with a workers’ compensation attorney in your area to get the benefits the law entities you to claim. In addition, you should explore with your attorney whether you have a claim for wrongful termination in retaliation for using workers’ comp benefits.

I hope your arm heals 100%. If it does, you would not have any claim under the Americans with Disabilities Act, since that law does not cover temporary disabilities. But if the injury has left you with a permanent disability, you should investigate with your lawyer or the EEOC whether you also have a claim for disability discrimination.

Good luck.


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