Most employees in this country work at will, which means they can quit at any time and can be fired at any time, with or without notice, and with or without cause. (For more information, see Nolo's article Employment At Will.) However, even an at-will employee can't be fired for a reason that's illegal. For example, employees cannot be fired for reasons that are discriminatory, intended to punish the employee for whistleblowing, or in violation of employee protection laws, such as the National Labor Relations Act or OSHA.
Below, you'll find information on common grounds for wrongful termination claims. You'll also find information on finding a lawyer, something you will likely need to do if you are considering taking legal action against your employer. A lawyer can evaluate your claims, let you know your chances of success, help you negotiate with your employer, and much more, even before you file any papers in court. Most legal claims, including employment claims, settle well before anyone sees the inside of a courtroom. A good attorney can help you make sure you get the best possible settlement under the circumstances.
Wrongful Termination: Was Your Firing Illegal?
If you've been fired from your job, do you have grounds to challenge the termination?
Damages in a Wrongful Termination Case for Breach of Contract
If your employer broke your employment contract, you may have the right to collect "damages" (the legal term for money). Damages are intended to compensate you for the financial losses caused by the contract breach. The types of damages available in a breach of contract case are more limited than the
Damages in a Wrongful Termination Case
If you sue a former employer for wrongful termination, you are asking the jury to award you money, called damages. Monetary damages are usually the only remedy available in a wrongful termination.
Should You Sign a Release When You Lose Your Job?
Waiving your right to sue a former employer: what it means and when not to sign on the dotted line.
Can You Be Fired From a Job While on Leave With Disability?
Being granted disability insurance benefits while you are off work does not prevent your employer from taking your job away.
Wrongfully Terminated for Having a Disability
Employees with disabilities are protected from workplace discrimination and entitled to reasonable accommodation.
Wrongful Termination: Retaliation & Whistleblowing
If you were fired for exercising your legal rights or complaining of illegal activity, you may have a case against your employer.
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Constructive Discharge: Were You Forced to Resign?
If you quit your job because of intolerable work conditions or treatment, in certain circumstances, your resignation may be considered a termination. A resignation under these circumstances is called a “constructive discharge” or “constructive termination.” If you were constructively discharged
Termination Checklist: What to Do When Letting an Employee Go in California
If you’re a manager or human resources professional, one of your least pleasant tasks may be handling employee terminations.
Hiring a Lawyer for an Employment Issue
Get some tips on finding and working with an employment lawyer.
Wrongful Termination Lawyers: How Much Do They Cost?
You may have a great wrongful termination case, but you will need to hire a lawyer to pursue it.
Will a Lawyer Take Your Wrongful Termination Case If You Were Fired for Cause?
You walk nervously into an unscheduled meeting with your boss and the human resources manager, who look grim.
Wrongful Termination: Gathering Documentation
If you lose your job, protect your legal rights with documentation.
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Can I still sue if I signed a release but later learned that my firing was illegal?
Question: I was laid off from my job several months ago, along with about a dozen of my coworkers. At the time, the company told us it was downsizing and had to reduce payroll.
Can I Be Fired While on Maternity Leave?
Can they fire me while I'm taking FMLA leave?
Do I have to tell potential employers that I am pregnant?
Question: I was recently laid off from my job, and I've been searching for a new one. Last week, I learned that I'm pregnant. I'm only six or seven weeks along, so I'm not planning on sharing the news with potential employers just yet. But is there some point during the hiring process where I'm legally
When should I tell my employer that I am pregnant?
Question: I recently learned that I'm pregnant. I'm only in my second month, and I've had several miscarriages in the past. I don't plan to tell anyone that I'm expecting until I'm well into my second trimester, to avoid painful conversations and keep myself on an even emotional keel. But a friend of
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