Terminated for any reason

I have read that Georgia is an at-will employment state. Does that mean anyone can be terminated for any reason? Is the only grounds for a law suit in Georgia based on discrimination or sexual harassment?

1 answer  |  asked Mar 15, 2001 8:29 PM [EST]  |  applies to

Answers (1)

Janet E. Hill
Few laws protecting workers

There are very few laws protecting workers in the state of Georgia, especially for those people working for private employers. There is a handicap act and an equal pay under Georgia law, for example, but they have limited remedies. Generally, your rights are going to be limited to federal anti-discrimination laws, such as Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Fair Labor Standards Act, the Equal Pay Act etc. Depending on the employer's conduct, there are some state tort laws and common law theories that can be utilized, such as intentional infliction of emotional distress, negligent hiring, negligent retention, to name some.
Unlike most other states, there is not even a "public policy" exception to employment at will in Georgia. For example, it is not illegal to fire an employee for filing a workers' compensation claim. The Georgia chapter of the National Employment Lawyers Association lobbies the legislature each year for better employment laws, and I would encourage you to contact your legislator and let him/her know of your interest in the labor laws improving.

posted by Janet E. Hill  |  Nov 30, 2000 1:45 PM [EST]

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