Losing a job is never easy, but it can be especially difficult when it is done without a valid reason. Wrongful termination occurs when an employer fires an employee for a reason that violates federal or state law. This article will explain wrongful termination, the different types of wrongful termination, the signs that indicate wrongful termination, and what to expect during the legal process.
If you are a resident of Memphis and have been wrongfully terminated from your job, a Memphis wrongful termination lawyer can assist you in seeking compensation and justice.
Types of wrongful termination
Discrimination occurs when an employer fires an employee based on race, color, religion, gender, national origin, age, or disability. This type of wrongful termination is illegal under federal and state law. If an employee can prove that discrimination was the reason for their termination, they may be entitled to compensation.
Retaliation occurs when an employer fires an employee for engaging in a protected activity. A protected activity is any activity that an employee has a legal right to engage in, such as filing a complaint with HR or reporting illegal activity. Retaliation is illegal under federal and state law.
Breach of contract
A breach of contract occurs when an employer violates the terms of an employment contract. An employment contract can be written or implied. If an employer terminates an employee in violation of an employment contract, the employee may be entitled to compensation.
Signs of wrongful termination
Wrongful termination can be challenging to prove, but there are several signs that indicate it may have occurred.
Lack of documentation
If an employer cannot provide documentation of an employee’s poor performance or misconduct, it may be a sign that the termination was wrongful. Employers must document performance issues and allow employees to improve before terminating them.
If an employer lays off an employee shortly after the employee engages in a protected activity, such as filing a complaint with HR, it may be a sign of retaliation. If the layoff appears company-wide but only affects certain employees, it may be a sign of discrimination.
If an employee was subjected to discriminatory comments or behavior before their termination, it may be a sign that discrimination was the reason for their termination. Discriminatory comments or behavior can include racist or sexist comments, unwarranted negative feedback, or withholding promotions or opportunities based on the employee’s protected characteristics.
What to expect during the legal process
If you decide to pursue legal action, you should be aware of these several steps in the legal process.
Mediation is a process in which a neutral third party, a mediator, works with both parties to settle. Mediation is voluntary and confidential. If a settlement is reached, it is binding.
Arbitration is similar to mediation but is binding. The parties present their case to an arbitrator, who makes a decision. The decision is final and cannot be appealed.
If mediation and arbitration are unsuccessful, you may file a lawsuit against your employer. A lawsuit can be time-consuming and expensive, but it may be necessary to protect your rights.
Wrongful termination is a serious issue that can have severe consequences for employees. It is essential to know what constitutes wrongful termination, the signs that indicate it may have occurred, and how to protect your rights. If you suspect you have been wrongfully terminated, consult an attorney specializing in employment law.