Were you terminated from your job and believe it was for unlawful reasons? If so, then you may have been wrongfully terminated. Under state and federal law, your employer is not able to fire you for an illegal reason, even if you are an employee at-will.
There are different reasons your termination may be considered a wrongful termination. These include discrimination (such as for your race, age, gender, sexual orientation, religion, etc.), retaliation, whistleblower, etc.
Common Wrongful Termination Cases
As stated above, there are a variety of reasons that may constitute your termination as wrongful. If your termination falls under one of these umbrellas, then you may have been wrongfully terminated:
Discrimination: Discrimination includes being terminated from your job for your gender, race, religion, age and more. For example, let’s say you are 47 years old and were preforming well at the company you have been employed at for the past 15 years but you were unexpectedly let go. Your company then immediately hired a 23 year old for your position. This may constitute as age discrimination. Similarly, if you overheard your manager making derogatory comments about you and your religion and then were fired with no reason stated, you may have been wrongfully terminated for your religion.
Retaliation: Retaliation is when an employer retaliates against an employee for participating in activates that are legally protected. If you filed a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission for discrimination and then were immediately let go of from that job, then you may have retaliation wrongful termination case. Under the law, if you are participating in an investigation for discrimination, then you cannot be fired.
Whistle-blowing: You are also protected by law if you report activities that your employer is participating in that are unlawful or could possibly harm the public. If you report that your employer is violating labor laws, such a refusing to pay minimum wage or providing paid breaks, and are terminated after immediately after reporting the violation, you may be able to file a claim for wrongful termination.
These are just a few examples of wrongful termination. If you are unsure if you have a wrongful termination case, you should consult with an employment law attorney. Compete the Free Case Evaluation on this page today!
How To Report Wrongful Termination
If you have been fired and you believe it was unfair you should report wrongful termination. The first step to take is to complain to your employer saying that you believe you have been wrongfully terminated. If you aren’t reinstated or no explanation is offered to you can report it to the Equal Employment Opportunities Commission (EEOC) or your state administrative agency, if it covers wrongful termination.
You will need to provide evidence that you were wrongfully terminated because of a discriminatory reason such as your gender, race, religion, sexual orientation, color, race or because you were pregnant or too old. For example, were women the only employees fired in a recent layoff, or were you terminated not long after your employer found out your age, religion, or ethnic group? Did your employer or supervisor make comments or take any type of actions that indicated they may not like certain groups? If you can prove any of the above you should provide the evidence when filing a complaint with the EEOC.
The first step the EEOC will take once it has received your complaint is contact your employer. If the employer won’t admit wrongful termination has taken place but the EEOC agent can see the evidence that proves your case is a wrongful termination you will be given permission to file a lawsuit against the employer for wrongful termination.
You may expect to receive compensation if you win your wrongful termination case which may include back pay and an amount for the pain and suffering you have had to endure for being wrongfully terminated
More Information on Wrongful Termination:
If you have recently been terminated and feel that you may have lost your job for an unfair cause, you may be able to file a complaint against your former employer for wrongful termination.
Wrongful termination is more common than you'd expect. Here are some scenarios on wrongful termination in the workplace.
In addition to federal laws, many states also have wrongful termination statutes that prohibit companies from firing employees for any of the reasons set out in federal laws. Some states have taken their wrongful termination laws further and introduced more "protected classes."