One of the real vexing issues for a New Jersey employer is how long he has to keep an employee, or at least keep a job open for an employee, who’s out on workers’ comp. There’s no hard and fast answer to that question. Legitimately, if somebody is out beyond the amount of time that would be available to him under either the Family Medical Leave Act or the New Jersey Leave Act, you may be able to terminate him.
If there’s no prospect of him coming back in any kind of timely fashion, you can replace him. These are always fact-sensitive issues and you really need some sort of legal advice before you terminate somebody under these circumstances. Otherwise you could open the door for a claim either under retaliation provision of the Workers’ Comp Act or under the New Jersey law against discrimination.