Five Facts About Wrongful Termination

posted by Charles Joseph  |  Sep 19, 2019 3:15 PM [EST]  |  applies to New York

What constitutes wrongful termination? How can you prove your wrongful termination case? And can you sue for wrongful termination in an at-will state? Here are five facts you need to know about wrongful terminatiion.

1. Wrongful termination must include an illegal reason for being fired.

Being fired for poor performance or because your boss doesn't like you does not meet the legal definition for wrongful termination. To qualify as wrongful termination, your employer must fire you for an illegal reason.

Illegal reasons for firing someone include discrimination and retaliation. For example, employers cannot fire someone because of their religion, age, or disability status. Other protected categories include race, gender, and pregnancy status. 

In addition, employers cannot fire people as an act of retaliation. For example, if an employee complains about wage discrimination, their employer cannot fire them in response. Similarly, if you file a sexual harassment complaint, your employer cannot fire you.

2. You can face wrongful termination even in an at-will state.

In an at-will state, employers can fire their employees for a good reason, a bad reason, or no reason at all. However, even in at-will states, employers cannot fire people for illegal reasons. Just because you work in an at-will state, you can still sue for wrongful termination.

3. You can sue for wrongful termination.

If you've experienced an illegal firing, or you suspect that you were let go for illegal reasons, you can file a wrongful termination lawsuit. You can take several steps to improve your chances in court, including keeping records showing your job performance and communications from your supervisor.

An employment lawyer can help you make the strongest case. 

4. Victims of wrongful termination can receive large settlements. 

During a wrongful termination lawsuit, you can sue for back pay, lost wages, and future pay. The amount of a wrongful termination settlement varies depending on the facts of the case and the employee's salary. However, nationally 10% of wrongful termination settlements are over $1 million.

5. The statute of limitations can be as short as 30 days.

Depending on the type of wrongful termination claim, the statute of limitations can be as short as 30 days. As a result, it's critically important to reach out to an employment lawyer to begin your case. If you were illegally fired, contact Charles Joseph for a free, confidential consultation.

Charles Joseph has over two decades of experience in employment law, including wrongful termination. He is the founder of Working Now and Then and the founding partner of Joseph and Kirschenbaum, a firm that has recovered over $120 million for clients.

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