No matter the length of time you are employed, you never want to leave a job through a termination. While there are various lawful reasons to fire an employee, especially if it is an at-will employment, there are situations where a termination could be deemed unlawful. Therefore, it is imperative that workers understand what a wrongful termination looks like, as it could aid them in a legal action.
Defining a wrongful termination
In simple terms, a wrongful termination occurs when an employee is let go from their position for illegal reasons. Additionally, it could also occur if a firing results in the violation of an employment contract or company policy.
A wrongful termination could occur if discrimination was involved in the firing. For example, the termination was based on the employee’s age, color, race, nationality, gender, sex, sexual orientation or religion. It could also occur if the guidelines established by company policy or employment contract were not followed or we violated by a firing.
Finally, a wrongful termination could occur is an employee was fired for being a whistleblower. This means they blew the whistle on illegal conduct in the workplace, which could be related to the regular business in the workplace or the employee refusing to commit an illegal act when asked by an employer.
Addressing a wrongful termination
If you believe that you were wrongfully terminated, it is important to note that you have rights protected by state and federal law. It is possible to take steps to file a legal action. If successful, an employee may have recourses available. This could include lost wages as well as damages suffered due to the wrongful firing.
Whether an employee suffers termination after blowing the whistle on their employer or was fired based on a protected characteristic, these firings could give rise to a wrongful termination action. This could help hold an employer liable for their wrongdoings while also assisting an employee recover compensation for the damages suffered as a result.