Wrongful termination is the termination of an employee’s contract that violates the contract itself or employment laws. The contract is crucial in determining whether the employee has been wrongfully terminated. In case no contract was signed, the dismissal can still be deemed as unjust because of the existence of an employment relationship.
Termination of an employee due to the following reasons is illegal:
- Discrimination of any kind (religion, race, sex, age).
- An employee cannot be fired for filing a lawsuit against the company for discrimination. It is against the law to fire an employee who is already part of an ongoing investigation against the company.
- An employer cannot let go of an employee for refusing to commit an illegal act.
- It is illegal to terminate an employee’s contract without following all the procedures mentioned in the employee handbook. In these cases, the employee has every right to claim wrongful termination.
All wrongful termination cases lead to one of two outcomes:
- The employer reinstating the terminated employee.
- The employee getting monetary compensation for being wrongfully dismissed.
In the United States, there is no wrongful termination law, but several state laws and court decisions are used to provide justice to wrongfully terminated employees. Instead of contracts, companies often ask employees to ‘work at will’ to protect themselves from lawsuits. But even in those cases, employees may claim wrongful termination if illegally dismissed.
Employees who feel they have been wrongfully terminated due of any of the reasons given above may contact an attorney to help them build a case against their former employers. An attorney might help them get reinstated, or receive monetary compensation for the hardships they had to face.