Wrongful Termination at Work -What is it And What is Next?

It is certainly not easy to deal with the termination of employment, especially if it is wrong. The first thing at hand in this unsettled state is to get a clear understanding of wrongful termination. 

Wrongful termination is when an employee is laid off illegally. It is essential to know that when an employer violates the law, he/she might face legal consequences. You can prove your wrongful termination and take legal action against your employer. 

Consulting a qualified San Antonio employment law attorney can ease the procedures. Below is a list of what falls under the definition of wrongful termination.

1. Contractual breach 

A written contract or employee handbook that sets down the reasons for or conditions under which an employee can be fired when violated by the company is considered a wrongful termination. It also includes employment termination of an employee for abiding by specific terms mentioned in the contract, just as it goes under the employer’s current needs. 

2. Harassment 

Harassing an employee under the grounds of age, gender, race, sexual orientation, disability, etc., is a punishable offense. This may be verbal, sexual, or in the form of certain actions. In such a case, when an employer fires the harassed employee, it is a wrongful termination.

3. Discrimination 

While harassment is a form of workplace discrimination, it is not limited to just that. It includes anything said or done that insults an employee for not having a desired set of characteristics. Usually, it happens based on gender, age, disability, race, religion, etc. When an employee is terminated for being discriminated against, the employer can be sued for wrongful termination. 

4. Retaliation 

Speaking up and reporting against an employer because of discrimination, harassment, illegal behavior, etc. an employee could stir up negative intent in an employer. When such an employee is laid off, it violates state laws, thus making it a wrongful termination.

5. Violation of the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) 

The state laws grant every employee a certain number of days off for reasons like sickness, taking care of a sick family member, care of a newborn baby, etc. When an employer terminates an employee for using such perks, it is considered a wrongful termination with legal consequences. 

What to do?

It is always good to be well informed about the state laws and your rights as an employee. Upon facing a wrongful termination, It is suggested to review your employment contract primarily. Check for the conditions mentioned to understand why you have been fired. Also, look for unemployment benefits, like reinstatement, compensatory damages, and entitled back pay. To proceed further legally, consult an attorney to assist you with it.