WC Injury not reported, salaried exempt employee sent home...

A salaried, exempt employee strained his back while on a
installation job in another State. He came back to Calif, and went to his own
private doctor - instead of the Industrial Urgent Care clinic, on 09/13.
The doctor put him on restricted duty - light lifting only. For whatever reason, the Owner and VP decided not to report this as a WC case ( problem #1).
The employee showed up all of last week, not doing much - we have to pay him for that, right ? ( problem #2). Today, the owner sent the employee home
because of a second doctors note restricting lifting from 09-19 to 09-26.
Is the time off considered a "forced vacation"? or do we have to pay the employee for a full week - the EE was here for 1 hour before being sent home ?
(problem #3).



  • 2 Comments sorted by Votes Date Added
  • Owner fired employee today. EE's wife is scheduled to have surgery tomorrow.
    EE had choice words with owner at time of firing. Bad scene. At issue was EE absences due to illness since November, a total of 6 days.One day was missed due to the back strain on the job. Are "ducks" in order? No ! As other EEs have missed more days, and nothing happened to them. Owner and EE disliked each other intensely. I will not be surprised if there is a big lawsuit.

  • Don't know CA W/C regs, but based on GA experience the key may lie in how the incident was handled initially.

    1) At what point did ee report the injury, and did he follow proper procedure?

    2) Is the preferred health facility listed on a posted Panel of Physicians?

    3) If so and the ee chose to go to his private MD, did the company pay for ee's medical expenses?

    Choosing not to report the incident as W/C does not necessarily relieve the company of W/C obligations. So if the termination was based on valid W/C related absences, there could be grounds for legal action. Also, beware claim of retaliation due to existing "bad blood" between ee and management.

    Sounds like it's time for legal advise...hopefully, not too late.
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