When filing a wrongful termination claim, nothing is more important than making sure you file correctly and on time. To add to that, the risk of having your claim denied is significantly higher when you don’t have the help of a trustworthy and experienced attorney reviewing your file.
What Is Wrongful Termination?
Whenever an employee has been fired from their job due to an illegal reason, they have a right to sue their former employer for damages. There are state and federal laws that prohibit discriminatory termination based on one’s:
- National origin
- Physical disability
- Mental disability
- Medical condition
- Genetic information
- Marital status
- Gender identity
- Gender expression
- Sexual orientation
- Military or veteran status
You are protected from being terminated due to any of the above reasons. Wrongful termination can also occur when a firing violates fundamental principles of public policy. Lastly, wrongful termination can occur when it is in violation of the worker’s employment contract.
Checklist to Determine If You Have a Wrongful Termination Case
In order to know if you have a valid claim, there are some questions you will need to answer about your workplace experience. If you can say yes to any of these situations, then you may be a victim of wrongful termination.
Discrimination or Harassment
- Did your employer, supervisor, or manager make discriminatory statements towards you?
- Do you have evidence of other forms of discrimination, harassment, or targeting of specific individuals or groups?
- Are certain groups treated better than others, such as college-educated, young people over employees over the age of 40?
- Have you ever had to reject any unwanted sexual or romantic advances by an employer, supervisor, or another superior?
- Has your employer, supervisor, or manager made discriminatory comments or statements showing a preference for a certain type of group of employees?
- Did you report any violations to your human resources department or an enforcement agency, such as the Occupational Safety and Health Administration?
- Did your employer or supervisor react negatively when you reported or filed a claim?
- Were you ever discouraged from exercising your rights, such as using paid leave under the FMLA?
- Were you involved with any investigations of the behavior or practices of the company, and if so, were you encouraged not to participate?
Breach of Contract
- If you had a contract, what were the written permissible reasons for termination or termination procedures?
- Does your employer have an employee handbook, and does it outline termination, discipline, promotions, etc.?
- Did your employer, supervisor, or manager ever make comments about your employment being extended, or that you could be fired for any reason?
What to Do If You Believe You Were Wrongfully Terminated
According to Lawyer Steven Rubin, there are other things you can do to help your wrongful termination case. First, document everything that happened, such as dates, details of incidents, who was involved, and what was said or done. If you can, get copies of performance reviews or evaluations, as well as timesheets or any other documentation that supports your claims. Secondly, review your contract. Then, you want to start looking into hiring an attorney. The best way to strengthen your case is to have it led by an experienced wrongful termination lawyer.