If an employee on Workers Comp and gets permanent disability, can you terminate their employment?

UPDATED: Jul 17, 2019

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If an employee on Workers Comp and gets permanent disability, can you terminate their employment?

The employee has been on workers comp for 2 years and has now been given permanent disability. We don’t have limited work available and when he was offered some a year ago he did not take it. Would he have a case for wrongful termination at this point?

Asked on July 17, 2019 under Employment Labor Law, California


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

If he cannot do the job he was employed to do, even with some "reasonable accommodation" (a not-too-expensive or -disruptive change in rules or procedures, or a not-too-expensive assistive device, such as dolly to help him move things he must move as part of his job) then you can terminate him without penalty or liability. The law does not make employers keep employees who simply cannot do their jobs.

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