Unfortunately, there are instances in which employers wrongfully terminate employees, leaving the employees vulnerable and without a job. The line between lawful termination and wrongful termination is sometimes difficult to see. If certain factors concerning your termination are found to be true, then you could have a viable wrongful termination case. You should contact an experienced employment attorney if you believe that you were wrongfully terminated by your employer.
Wrongful Termination versus Lawful Termination
The first step in seeking justice is determining if you have indeed been wrongfully terminated. As mentioned above, certain requirements must be met for your termination to be considered unlawful. If you were terminated for engaging in a protected activity (such as filing a charge of discrimination, participating in a discrimination investigation, or otherwise opposing discrimination in the workplace), then your termination could be considered retaliation, which is wrongful. Similarly, you cannot be terminated for discriminatory reasons (i.e., termination based on age, race, color, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, pregnancy, religion, national origin, or disability).
Generally, employers and companies are well-aware of the potential for wrongful termination claims, which is why they have legal departments, human resources departments, and particular policies in place to prevent wrongful terminations and avoid such claims. At the same time, if you are terminated for violating company policies, not following safety rules, or other similar reasons, your termination is likely to be classified as a termination for cause.
Other Types of Wrongful Termination in Missouri and Kansas
While the vast majority of wrongful termination cases involve discriminatory reasons, there are other circumstances in which your termination could be considered illegal. These circumstances include:
Violation of Public Policy
Employers can generally terminate at-will employees for any (non-discriminatory) reason, but public policy provides some exceptions to at-will employment. If your employer terminates you for engaging in a protected activity, in violation of public policy, you might have a legitimate wrongful termination claim. Examples of activities that are usually protected by public policy include:
- Reporting an employer’s illegal activity to authorities (whistleblowing)
- Refusing an employer’s instruction to do something illegal
- Exercising rights under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA)
- Exercising workers’ compensation rights
- Performing jury duty
Breach of Contract
While most employees are employed at-will, some employment relationships are governed by a written contract of employment. For example, if you are a member of a union, your employment might be governed by a collective bargaining agreement. Most written employment contracts provide that the employer can only terminate the employee “for cause”. If you have a written employment contract, and your employer fires you without good cause, you may have a wrongful termination claim involving breach of contract. An attorney with experience involving employment contracts can help you navigate any question you may have.
Contact a Missouri Wrongful Termination Attorney at Hollis Law Firm Today
If any of the above situations have happened to you, you should not hesitate to contact Hollis Law Firm today for a free case evaluation. Our experienced team of attorneys can help you hold your employer accountable if you have been wrongfully terminated. We can guide you through the process of wrongful termination litigation, and we want to help you obtain the compensation you deserve. Feel free to call us at (800) 701-3672 or contact us via our website.