MCL 418.311(11) Interpretation

MCL 418.311(11); MSA 17.237(301)(11) states: A person shall not discharge an employee or in any manner discriminate against an employee because the employee filed a complaint or instituted or caused to be instituted a proceeding under this act or because the exercise by the employee on behalf of himself or herself or others of a right afforded by this act. In Phillips v. Butterball Farms Co, Inc (After Second Remand), 448 Mich 239; 531 NW2d 144 (1995), the plaintiff claimed that she had been discharged in retaliation for filing a worker's compensation claim. Phillips, supra at 241. In reversing this Court's holding that the plaintiff's damages for lost wages would be limited to nominal damages, the Michigan Supreme Court stated that its action was based on the "public policy exception to the employment at will doctrine." Id. at 253. The public policy at issue was the prohibition against retaliatory discharge provided for in 301(11) of the Workers' Disability Compensation Act, MCL 418.101 et seq.; MSA 17.237(101) et seq.