Wrongful Termination Attorneys in Wilson, North Carolina
Employment in the United States is at will. An employee can quit for any or no reason, and an employer can terminate an employee for any or no reason. In the case of an employer, however, there are laws and circumstances when a termination might be illegal, opening up the possibility of a lawsuit by the terminated employee.
If you feel you have been wrongfully terminated in or around Wilson, North Carolina, contact the employment law attorneys at Lusby & Brooks, P.A. for clear legal support. We have more than a decade’s experience in helping others like you exercise your rights and obtain redress for wrongful and discriminatory treatment.
In addition to Wilson, we proudly serve clients throughout North Carolina, including Wilmington, Fayetteville, Jacksonville, Raleigh, Charlotte, and Greensboro.
What Is Wrongful Termination?
Wrongful termination can spring from several actions by the terminating party, that is, the employer, not the least of which is a violation of federal and state laws that protect employees based on their race, color, national origin, gender, religion, age, disability, pregnancy, or genetic information.
In other words, if an employer terminates an employee based on discriminating against their protected status, that action is illegal and actionable. The terminated employee can file a lawsuit to recover lost past wages, perhaps even to be restored to their previous position.
Other Causes of Wrongful Termination
In addition to laws protecting employees in the protected classes outlined above, such as the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA), the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (GINA), and others, there are additional avenues for claiming wrongful termination. Other causes of wrongful termination include:
RETALIATION: Suppose you report your supervisor for sexual harassment or discrimination, and agents at the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) begin an investigation. Suppose the EEOC sends out someone to investigate, and you collaborate in the investigation. Soon, your employer finds a way to give you a poor performance review and let you go. Was this retaliation for your report and participation in the investigation? If so, you may likely have been terminated wrongfully.
WRITTEN PROMISES: Obviously, if you’re given a contract when you are hired, the contract will no doubt spell out the terms of employment, including length and cause for separation or termination. But other written promises can be just as binding. You may have an offer letter or other document that makes promises about your continued employment. If your employer violates a written promise in whatever format, you may well have a case for wrongful termination.
IMPLIED PROMISES: In this circumstance, your employer said or did something that seemed to promise continued employment. If you seek a wrongful termination lawsuit based on an implied promise, the first thing the court will want to know is whether such a promise of long-term employment was made when you were hired. In addition to that, they will want to look at the duration of your employment, the content of your performance reviews, your history of job promotions, and more.
VIOLATIONS OF PUBLIC POLICY: If you’re fired because, for instance, you refuse to cook the books for your employer, or refuse to do something else that violates the law or public policy, then you may have a good reason to file for a violation of public policy wrongful termination. Other examples of public policy terminations include firing an employee for serving jury duty, taking off time to vote, or serving in the military or National Guard.
WHISTLEBLOWING: Whistleblowing is protected by more than 20 federal statutes, many of which are industry-specific and overseen by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). If you blow the whistle on an unsafe workplace condition or practice and find yourself on the chopping block, this is another case of a potential wrongful termination action.
CONSTRUCTIVE DISCHARGE: Constructive discharge as an actionable violation first came into existence with the establishment of the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB). At the time, constructive discharge referred to actions by employers to make it so tough on union organizers that they were forced to resign. Later, the concept spread to non-labor-union employees as well.
Constructive discharge has to amount to more than the fact that you were passed over for promotions or didn’t get along with your supervisor. It has to be so extreme that a “hostile environment” results and forces you to leave the company. The legal standard is to prove that a “reasonable person” in your situation would’ve done the same.
Wrongful Termination Damages and Reparations
If you can prove wrongful termination under any of the categories above, depending on the circumstances, you can sue for:
Lost wages and benefits
Compensation for emotional distress and physical pain
Loss of professional reputation
Possible punitive damages if the wrongdoing were severe enough
Wrongful Termination Attorneys Serving
Wilson, North Carolina
If you feel you have been terminated for any of the reasons or under any of the circumstances discussed above, reach out immediately to the employment law attorneys at Lusby & Brooks, P.A. for legal help. We will meet with you, examine the circumstances of your termination, and advise you of your best options going forward, including that of a wrongful termination lawsuit if warranted. If matters do go to court, we will stand by you every step of the way and fight for the best outcome possible.