Wrist injury and being laid off.

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Wrist injury and being laid off.

I reported an injury about my wrist on a Friday afternoon. I was asked if I wanted to go to a doctor that same day, I said yes, later i was asked if I wanted to wait until that following Monday just to see how it would do over the weekend. I agreed, that Monday came, it felt a little better but not completely. I took that Tuesday off b/c that morning it was in so much pain. That Wednesday I was laid off. From my recollection I was the only one laid off. I worked there for 2 years but left when I got pregnant and came back 7 months ago. I understand that mine is an at-will state but I feel like it was not right. Am I making a big deal out of this or do I have a legitimate claim?

Asked on March 15, 2017 under Employment Labor Law, South Carolina

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

Did you have the right to take Tuesday off because you were in pain? That is, did you have and use paid time off, like sick leave or vacation days, to cover the absence? Or get employer approval in advance (before taking the time off) to not come in? If so, then they could not terminate you for using PTO you'd earned or for relying on their permission to not go to work that morning and you may have a case for wrongful termination, especially if you can show that it may be linked to you having a child or having taken time off due to being pregnant. If you feel this was the case, speak with an employment law attorney to evaluate your case and potential rights in detail. On the other hand, if you did not use PTO for the absence or get permission for it in advance, then it would have been an unauthorized absence and your employer could legally terminate you for it.


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