Under North Carolina’s Retaliatory Employment Discrimination Act (REDA), workers who file a workers’ compensation claim are protected from retaliation by their employers [§ 95-241(a)(1)(a)]. This means that your employer cannot fire, demote, or change your employment situation for the worse because you file a workers’ compensation claim.
Buzzfeed recently published an article about Stephen Keenan. The event occurred at a Christmas party last year. According to the article “Keenan drank 10 free beers and a vodka and coke at the private event, then proceeded to tell a board member of his company to ‘f*ck off’.”
This frequently comes as a surprise to many people, but employers have no legal obligation to treat employees the same. An employee that makes a mistake costing the employer substantial loss may be fired while another employee that makes the same mistake might get promoted. These are decisions that are made in the business judgement of the employer. It is only in a very narrow set of cases that being fired is actionable under North Carolina or federal law.