Protecting Employees from Wrongful Termination for over 25 years.
Wrongful termination occurs when you are fired from your job as a result of retaliation or discrimination. As an employee, you should try to work hard and do the best job you possibly can. When you maintain this work ethic, you should be able to enjoy a long, prosperous career unless you are the victim of wrongful termination.
Wrongful termination can occur in any occupation and to any employee. You can get fired from work because you are a member of a protected class. You can get fired because you spoke out against discrimination or sexual harassment in the workplace. Whether used as a form of retaliation or another way to discriminate, wrongful termination violates employment laws and your right to work.
As the victim of wrongful termination, you deserve an attorney that will help you stand up against your employer. Your lawyer should advocate for your rights to work, regardless of your protected class. They should advocate for you regardless of your choice to speak up against discrimination and harassment.
What Is Considered Wrongful Termination?
Wrongful termination is related to discrimination and harassment in the workplace. You may have a claim for wrongful termination if an employer, CEO, supervisor, or manager fires you due to issues relating to membership in a protected class.
Protected classes include:
- National Origin
- Age(over 40)
- Gender Identity
- Sexual Orientation
- Genetic Information
- Citizenship Status
- Military Status
Wrongful termination can also be a form of retaliation. You complain to HR about discrimination or sexual harassment and are fired from work. As a result, you may have a claim for wrongful termination.
Employees can also experience wrongful termination when using Family and Medical Leave Act leave as provided by law. You may receive a call, email, text, or letter informing you that you are not returning to work and being fired or laid off. If no one else in your department received the same termination notice, you might have a claim for wrongful termination.
Retaliation can also occur if an employer is a whistleblower. Whistleblowers report illegal activity to the government or other governing agencies. If a whistleblower is then fired in retaliation for reporting the information, they may have a claim for wrongful termination.
To learn more about your rights regarding wrongful termination, contact a dedicated employment discrimination attorney.
How Would You Recognize Wrongful Termination at Work?
Some examples of wrongful termination may include, but are not limited to:
- Your supervisor fired you when he learned you are pregnant.
- Your manager is anti-Semitic. He creates a reason to fire you, but it is known that he created reasons to fire you because you are Jewish.
- You complained to human resources about sexual harassment in the office. You were fired a week later.
- Your client makes it clear he does not like to work with “Dark people.” You were fired three days later.
- Your supervisor made a sexual pass at you. You refused his advance. He fired you three days later. He claimed you were not a right fit for the company culture.
- You reported your supervisor to the IRS for suspected illegal auditing activity. The SEC investigates and does not find any evidence to support your claim. Your boss fires you because he claims you did not follow company policy when dealing with a particular client. You never worked with that client.
- You qualified for and were approved for FMLA to care for your sick mother. You were fired while on leave.
How Does At-Will Employment Affect Wrongful Termination?
Most states are at-will employment states. At-will employment means that an employer can fire you for any reason, except a reason based on discrimination or retaliation. At-will employment means your boss can fire you because he just doesn’t like you. He can fire you for wearing pink too often.
Your boss can fire you for any reason that does not include any protected classes. Protected class members cannot get fired simply because they are a protected class member. If you can prove that your employer’s provided reason or actual reason for termination is related to protected class status, you may have a case for wrongful termination.
At-will employment does not protect employers from firing employees in retaliation either. Any employer that terminates an employee to get back at them for an action is breaking the law.
How Can You File Your Wrongful Termination Claim?
If you are the victim of wrongful termination, you may choose to file a claim with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). If the EEOC determines your claim fits the criteria for wrongful termination, you will receive a Right to Sue Letter to file a lawsuit in federal court.
Sometimes, you can file a wrongful termination claim directly with the federal court. When wrongful termination relates to FMLA leave, the Equal Pay Act, or employee rights not governed by the EEOC, you may file your claim directly with the federal court.
You may choose, instead, to file a claim under your state’s employment discrimination laws. Some states offer better remedies or allow employees to file claims if they work for companies with fewer than 15 employees.
You may also choose to file a wrongful termination claim under whistleblower protection laws. These laws protect employees who are reporting employer illegal activities and fired from work as a result.
What Compensations Are Available for Victims of Wrongful Termination?
Once you file the claim, the courts may offer the following compensations for your winning claim. Some relief may include the following:
- Reinstatement of employment and benefits
- Reimbursement of medical and other related expenses
- Court costs
- Lost Wages
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Punitive damages
How Can an Employment Lawyer Help Your Wrongful Termination Claim?
Wrongful termination can be devastating. You must figure out how to provide for your family when the unexpected suddenly occurs. The last thing you need to worry about is filing a lawsuit against your employer. However, it may be the answer to all your financial problems.
A dedicated discrimination and harassment lawyer can help you fight for your rights so you can focus on finding a new job and supporting your family. They can help you negotiate a settlement early in the process to make it as easy as possible for you to move on.
However, if your employer refuses to negotiate a fair settlement, your attorney will stand by your side and help you stand up for your rights. They can attempt to negotiate with your employer all along the way. In the meantime, they can ensure you meet all required court deadlines. They will file each answer, schedule each deposition, and stand by your side as your advocate from the moment they file your initial charge.
Contact Our Employment Discrimination Attorneys for Your Free Consultation
If you work hard and do your job, you should trust you will have a job for as long as you want it. However, some employers have other intentions. If you are the victim of wrongful termination in the workplace, the experienced employment discrimination attorneys at the Derek Smith Law Group can help.
Were You the Victim of Wrongful Termination Due to Retaliation, Discrimination, or Whistleblower Claims? Do You Want to Know More About Your Rights? Please Call 800.807.2209 or email [email protected] for More Information.