In at-will employment states like New York, employers can fire their workers at any time and for any reason as long as it is within the confines of the law. However, not all terminations are legal. Your employer might have illegally dismissed you, and you ought to take appropriate action to protect your rights.
Wrongful termination occurs when an employer violates your legal rights or breaks the law when discharging you. This can happen in various instances, as detailed below.
Wrongful termination explained
You might have lost your job after filing a workplace harassment claim or assisting investigations into such allegations. Similarly, your employer may have fired you in retaliation for whistleblowing, claiming workers’ compensation benefits or refusing to participate in illegal activity. All these are protected activities, and your employer cannot retaliate against you for taking part in them.
In addition, your dismissal may be illegal if you were let go because of your age, gender, race or disability, among other discriminatory grounds. Several state and federal laws prohibit any form of workplace discrimination.
What should you do about a wrongful termination?
It is advisable to have an informed assessment of the prevailing circumstances to determine the best way forward if you think your termination was unlawful. Once you establish the facts, you can file a wrongful termination claim against your employer and may be entitled to compensation for the damages you suffered from the illegal termination.
You can recover lost wages and work benefits, reinstatement to your job and damages for the emotional anguish you suffered from the wrongful termination. The proper guidance will also help you build your case and navigate the sometimes complex legal procedures. It will also increase your chances of a desirable outcome.