Why You Should Hold Your Employer Accountable If You Were Wrongfully Terminated

Finding a new job can certainly be tough, but when you’ve been terminated by a recent employer, it can be even harder to get hired. Though you may be qualified, a recent termination could send your application straight to the bottom of the stack. At-will employers have the ostensible prerogative to terminate employees at any time without notice and without a reason, but even so, certain terminations remain illegal.

If you believe you might have been wrongfully fired, your recourse is to connect with an attorney. If you have a case, you could file a lawsuit against your former boss. It’s critical for you to continue searching for a new job, however, no matter how many times you get rejected. You have to mitigate your losses to win a wrongful termination case. This includes looking for a new job and accepting a suitable offer when it comes. You can still win compensation from your old employer, but you must show you’ve made an earnest effort to find new employment.

Don’t be afraid to hold your employer accountable.

If you’re afraid to file a lawsuit against your former employer, that’s understandable. But if you no longer work for that company, there really isn’t anything they can hold over you to intimidate you.

Examples of wrongful termination include:

· Terminating you outside of your employment contract
· Retaliation for exercising a legal right
· Giving a false reason for termination
· Termination based on a protected class (race, gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation, familial status, etc.)
· Termination after discovering and/or reporting fraud
· Termination for being a whistle-blower

Don’t be afraid to hold your former employer to account for wrongful discharge. Here are some of the excellent reasons to move forward with a suit.

1. Your lawsuit has the potential to alter company policy.

If you’ve been wrongfully terminated, you may not be the only person who’s been treated unfairly. By filing a lawsuit against your former employer, you could potentially create dramatic changes in the company that will have positive effects for other workers.

Perhaps you were fired because you tried to get your boss to stop doing something illegal. Or maybe you exercised a legal right in filing a complaint with a government agency.

If you were fired for seeking to get your boss to comply with a law or regulation, the court could order the business to comply or lose its license. If a court orders your former employer to comply with laws and regulations, inspections will follow. Your former bosses won’t be able to get away with treating other employees as poorly after your case.

2. You can demand policy changes as part of your lawsuit.

You don’t have to wait for government officials to recognize a need for change. You can demand policy changes in your suit. This is fairly common. For example, in a recent lawsuit against Pinterest, a shareholder accused the company of restricting leadership to white men. The lawsuit, according to law.com, “demanded extensive changes to company bylaws.”

The Pinterest shareholder filed suit after multiple employees reported being underpaid and ousted based on their race and gender. Race and sex discrimination are illegal under federal law. Sometimes it requires only one person to stand up to an employer and force it to make changes. If those changes are ordered by a court, the company won’t have a choice.

3. You can recover unpaid wages.

Does your former boss owe you unpaid wages? Whether you’re employed at-will or through an employment contract, you might be entitled to unpaid wages. Instead of filing a separate complaint with the labor board for those, talk to a termination attorney. Find out if he or she will handle recovery of compensation for wages you’re owed. Although resolving a labor board complaint is comparatively easy, it takes time and energy. If you can combine all your claims into one legal complaint, you might end up less stressed.

4. You might not know you’re owed wages.

Your employer might owe you wages without your knowing it. For example, in California, employers must pay their workers one hour of pay for each day they don’t get all their proper breaks. You might be owed wages if your employer cuts your breaks short, interrupts your unpaid meal breaks, or requires you to waive your meal break as a condition of employment.

5. Stand up for yourself and for what’s right.

Wrongful termination is a big deal. Whether you’ve been fired for taking leave under the medical leave act or for complaining about sexual harassment, a wrongful termination lawyer can help. Going to court will be a new and demanding challenge, but don’t allow your former bosses to intimidate you. If you’ve been wrongfully terminated, you deserve to be compensated for your losses. Remember to keep looking for new employment, however. Make sure you do everything you can to demonstrate to the court that you’re acting in good faith.

No matter how you feel now, contact a wrongful termination lawyer as soon as possible to review your case. That legal professional will help you determine the best course of action.

This post is brought to you by Larry Alton.

Photo credit: Shutterstock

The post Why You Should Hold Your Employer Accountable If You Were Wrongfully Terminated appeared first on The Good Men Project.

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