5 Reasons Why You May Qualify for a Wrongful Termination Case

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Wrongful Termination

Most states, including California, are at-will employment states. This means an employers\ does not have to give you a reason for firing you and an employee can leave his or her job at their discretion. However, employers cannot end an employer-employee relationship without complying with state, federal, and company regulations. Doing so is unfair and violates an employee’s rights.

Therefore, the reasons for the termination must stay in line with the government’s mandates for hiring and firing as well as a company’s policies for training and time off. If an employer fires you for any of the above-mentioned reasons, you have it in your right to sue them for wrongfully ending the employer-employee contract.

Wrongful termination may fall under five major classification – all which give you reason to contact an attorney to discuss your employment rights. These five categories are covered below.

1. Discrimination in the Workplace

If you’re fired because of your ethnicity, race, gender, sexual orientation, country of origin, or because you have a disability, you can sue an employer. All these reasons violate federal law. In these instances, you should speak to a wrongful termination attorney. 

In most cases, you will also have to file a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, or EEOC. This type of filing can be complex. That is why you need to confer with an attorney who specializes in this type of law.

2. Employment Breaches of Verbal or Written Agreements

If you enter into a verbal or written agreement with an employer, he or she may violate the contract if the stipulations of the agreement guarantee employment for a specific time. For example, if you are guaranteed work for three months and you are fired before then, you may have a reason to file a claim. This is true whether the contract is expressed or implied.

3. Employer Retaliation Toward an Employee Exerting their Workplace Rights 

As an employee, you have certain rights when working. These liberties include the right to a safe workplace, the right to privacy, and the right to report illegal activities against an employer. Therefore, an employer cannot legally fire an employee for reporting the company, for instance, to OSHA or another authority for a legal violation. 

4. Terminating an Employee for Taking a Leave of Absence

Legally, as an employee, you can take time off work for military obligations, jury duty, or for a medical leave. In California, employees can take off work for 12 weeks if they have a serious health condition or experience pregnancy-related health issues. They may also take time off to take care of a family member who is seriously ill. 

5. Employer Failure to Follow Company Protocol before Employee Termination

Some companies have a specific protocol to follow when disciplinary action is taken against an employee. A company’s employee handbook usually details these procedures – steps that must be taken first before an employee is fired. 

For instance, the human resources department may make it a company policy that an oral warning be given to an employee for an infraction. For subsequent violations, the policy may state that the employer provides written warning before termination.

If your employer does not follow the employment policy for termination and fires you before giving oral or written warnings, you should speak to an attorney. 

Talk to a Lawyer Today

When it comes to filing lawsuits, time is of the essence. Have you been treated unfairly in the workplace? If so, make an appointment to speak to an attorney now.