Wrongful Termination of a Coal MinerIn January 2019, a coal miner lost his job in retaliation for making safety complaints. The coal miner worked at a surface operation in Southern West Virginia. He repeatedly reported safety violations to his supervisors including excessive coal dust, coal trucks speeding through the coal yard and trip hazards. The coal miner also reported the safety violations to state and federal mine health and safety inspectors.  

Approximately a month before the coal miner lost his job, he was involved in a minor workplace accident with no injuries resulting from the poor visibility caused by excessive coal dust. The coal company gave the coal miner his first ever written warning in ten years with the company. The coal miner continued to perform his job duties business as usual.  When the coal miner returned from Christmas break, the coal company escalated the written warning to a termination.

What Went Wrong?

Coal companies in West Virginia have a duty to comply with state and federal regulations. Encompassed within this duty is to provide its coal miners with a safe workplace free of retaliation.  Coal miners should never fear losing their job for speaking up about safety.

How Bailess Law Firm Helped

At Bailess Law Firm, we have a proven system geared toward helping clients restore the losses taken from them as a result of unlawful employment practices. 

As soon as we learned about this case, we knew there had to be another side of the story. We began asking questions. Why would a coal company fire a ten-year employee after issuing him his first ever write up? If the coal miner’s conduct was so bad, why did the coal company continue to let him perform his job duties and wait nearly a month before firing him?  It is all too common when employers engage in unlawful practices like in this case, the employer’s reasons for termination simply do not add up.

Our team of lawyers and paralegals got to work.  Our team gathered documents, witness statements, and evidence to prove the coal company’s reasons for terminating the coal miner were false. We hired experts and took over several depositions of the coal company’s witnesses.  In the end, we were able to obtain an excellent result for our client.  Although our client should have never lost his job in the first place, we are so appreciative to take part in helping him restore his losses and hold the coal company accountable.

How Bailess Law Firm Can Help You

We take workplace retaliation seriously. Our team of legal professionals are highly experienced and compassionate in combating unlawful employment practices.  Contact us 24/7 at (304) 413-1400, or contact us by filling out this form for a free consultation.