A Cahokia man has filed suit against his former employer, alleging he was wrongly terminated after filing for workers' compensation benefits.

Antoine Smith claims he worked for Allied Services from Aug. 18, 2008, until Nov. 12 when he was fired.

Before his termination, Smith sustained accidental injuries on Sept. 4 during his employment with Allied, according to the complaint filed May 24 in St. Clair County Circuit Court.

Following his injury, Smith reported to his employer, sought medical treatment, filed a claim, took time off work and received benefits, the suit states.

"That on November 12, 2009, the Plaintiff was terminated from his employment with the Defendant in retaliation for exercising his rights under the Illinois Workers' Compensation Act when he was terminated under the pretext of leaving work without notification and a reduction in the work force but was actually terminated due to his exercise of rights under the Illinois Workers' Compensation Act since the absences were due to his work related injury," the complaint says.

Because of his termination, Smith claims he lost substantial wages, lost his health and dental insurance coverage, lost his seniority and vacation and sick time, lost his 401(k) and pension benefits and experienced pain and emotional distress.

In his two-count complaint, Smith seeks a judgment of more than $100,000, plus costs.

Thomas C. Rich and Kristina D. Cooksey of Fairview Heights will be representing him.

St. Clair County Circuit Court case number: 10-L-258.

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