Experts Speak

Steps to take for taking legal action against an employer for wrongful termination

Employers keep trampling the employment laws, as evident from thousands of employees facing wrongful termination from employment every year. Most employers care the least about how well they look after their employees’ interests by abiding by employment’s contractual and legal obligations. It is evident from rampant wrongful termination, which is the most common dispute regarding employment.

Employers dare employees to take legal action against wrongful termination because most employees are not aware of the correct legal course of action to protect their employment. Moreover, engaging a wrongful termination attorney involves money and could be a protracted legal process that might sometimes deter the affected employees from suing their employers. Most importantly, you must ascertain correctly that it is wrongful termination before you can take any action.

What is wrongful termination?

Wrongful termination is a legal term that means firing an employee by the employer that feels that the employee has acted in a way or is involved in something unauthorized or illegal. Employers might consider the following as unlawful and reason enough to sack an employee.

  • Any reason linked to the violation of the laws at the federal, state, or local level that culminates in firing an employee
  • If the reason cited by the employer for firing an employee contravenes the public policy standards
  • Any breach in terms of employment or agreement by the employer that led to the termination of employment
  • Suppose an employer fires an employee for disobeying work instructions or refusing to take illegal orders. In that case, it could result in the employee committing a crime or becoming involved in some unlawful activity by following them.
  • When employers disregard the company policy and override it by not following the proper employment procedure.

From the above, it is clear that a claim for wrongful termination may go beyond the employment laws’ ambit and overlap with other fields of law.

Filing a complaint about wrongful termination

Regardless of the reason for wrongful termination, an employee must follow a laid down procedure to file a complaint against the employer. To establish the employer’s wrongdoing, the employee must gather the courage to pursue the case and prepare by gathering evidence to show proof, followed by filing a claim with the EEOC (Equal Employment Opportunity Commission). You can file the claim online on EEOC’s website by visiting a local EEOC office or the office of the Fair Employment Practice Agency in your area.

The EEOC will then start an investigation against the company or employer, which might help the employee with some remedial gain or force the employer to modify their hiring and firing policy or a mixture of both.

If the investigation’s outcome seems insufficient for the employee, then EEOC can permit the employee to file a lawsuit if the employee wants to escalate the issue to the court.

 Although it is difficult to prove wrongful termination because of the ‘at will’ policy adopted by most states, only an expert employment lawyer can decide about the merit of your case and advice accordingly.

by Sujain Thomas

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