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COVID-19 and Arizona Employment Law Issues

Posted on August 24, 2020 in

As COVID-19 cases continue to increase across the country and states begin to implement reopening plans, Arizona residents are facing pressure from their employers to return to work. Many of these workplaces are failing to comply with basic public health precautions, leading to more infections, hospitalizations, and wrongful deaths.

If you witnessed COVID-related negligence or abuse in the workplace, contact Jensen Phelan Law Firm, P.C. immediately. Our attorneys are working closely with employees to seek justice for these flagrant violations of public safety, and we need your help to corroborate these cases.

What Constitutes Negligence or Abuse?

Workplace abuse involves any behavior that leads to physical or emotional harm to employees, such as bullying, harassment, or any act of violence. Workplace negligence, on the other hand, involves any action by an employer that leads to an illness, injury, death, or property damage of an employee or customer.

During the pandemic, an employer failing to take basic precautions to prevent COVID infection would be an act of workplace negligence. This may include forcing COVID-positive employees to return to work, failing to enforce social distancing, and not requiring masks. If your employer exercises abusive tactics to force you to return to work, you may also have a case of workplace abuse on your hands.

The state of Arizona is currently investigating the Granite Creek Health and Rehabilitation Center for pressuring 16 COVID-positive employees to return to work at the care facility. Since these employees had to interact with the patients living at the Center, these actions resulted in two deaths and at least one confirmed infection.

This case likely meets the criteria for workplace negligence. One of the most obvious guidelines to protect employees and residents from COVID-19 exposure is to prevent sick employees from interacting with others. However, the Center was likely aware of the employees’ COVID diagnosis — and continued to pressure them to come to work regardless.

Your Legal Rights as an Employee During COVID-19

Under Arizona employment law, employees do not usually have any legal remedies if they refuse to work because they generally feel unsafe. However, you do have the right to refuse work and pursue legal action if you are in immediate danger.

If you believe that your employer is disregarding safety precautions and not doing enough to prevent COVID-19 exposure, you can file a claim with Arizona’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). You can also contact an attorney currently working on COVID-related employment litigation to discuss further legal action, if your case qualifies.

Are You a Witness? Contact Our Law Firm Today

No one should put their lives at risk for a negligent or abusive employer who refuses to follow basic health precautions during the COVID-19 pandemic. If you witnessed negligence or abuse related to COVID-19 in the workplace, the Prescott personal injury attorneys at Jensen Phelan Law Firm, P.C. want to hear from you.

We are currently working on litigation related to workplace COVID negligence, and we are seeking witnesses to help us corroborate these cases. With your assistance, we can seek justice for the wrongful deaths and resulting injuries that these employees and their families experienced.

If you witnessed an employer disregard safety precautions, faced pressure to return to work despite a positive COVID diagnosis or unsafe conditions, contracted COVID on the job, or lost a loved one to COVID due to workplace-related negligence, our firm can help.

Contact Jensen Phelan Law Firm, P.C. as soon as possible to discuss your experience and legal options.