Getting fired from your job can be quite a stressful situation. Perhaps your boss gave you a seemingly nonsensical reason as to why they fired you, even when you feel that you’ve been working hard and following all orders given. If your boss has wrongfully terminated you or had no real reason to let you go, you might want to consult with an attorney. You have rights as an employee in the workplace, and it’s important that you know those rights.
An employer has the right to fire an employee, as long as there is a legitimate reason. There have been cases where employers have been dishonest about the grounds for the termination, but employees were not ultimately fired because they were able to prove discrimination or another reason why their termination was wrongful. Lawyers will assess whether or not your termination was a wrongful offense or not. Here are some ways that they will figure that out:
By assessing your employment contract
- If there is a limitation on your employer’s right to terminate, they must comply with the contract’s requirements. For example, your employment contract may state that your employer can only terminate you for gross misconduct. This means that they will not be able to fire you for poor performance. Most employers will provide a contract that is for at-will employment, but if your contract states limits for termination, their firing you may be a violation of the contract.
By reading through policies
- An employer will usually give employees some sort of handbook of policies that will act as a contract between employers and employees. There may be policies pertaining to discipline or other policies that could be applied to the reason for your termination.
By asking for other employees’ opinions
- Other employees will be the best witnesses of your termination case. After all, you saw them daily, and they would have known whether or not you were deserving of the termination. If there was a true, fair reason for your termination, your fellow employees would be aware of these reasons. Your lawyer may also want to know whether the employer was treating you differently or equally to your fellow employees.
Perhaps other employees were let go as well, and your lawyer will investigate the reasons for which they were terminated to determine whether or not there are similarities to your case. If your employer treated you differently based on any legally protected status such as your race, disability, gender, ethnicity, age, sexual orientation, and so on, this could lead to your lawyer conducting a discrimination claim. Any false or illegal reason for firing someone will make the termination a pretext, meaning the employer is using the “reason” as a cover-up for their true reason.
By uncovering more evidence
- The lawyer may try to seek out any additional evidence or witnesses that may be used in your case. Any witnesses with valuable information about the termination or events leading up to it will be contacted and asked to come forward. The lawyer will try to get their hands on every piece of evidence and relevant documentation they can find. This means looking through all contracts and policies thoroughly.
By evaluating you as a witness
From the second you meet your lawyer, they will be assessing you as a potential witness. You want to make sure you are presentable, concise, organized, and clear about your concerns regarding the termination. Keeping a business-like demeanor is crucial in impressing your lawyer and being seen as a credible witness to the jury.
Romanosky Law specializes in protecting individuals that have had a wrongful termination in NJ.
Get in touch with us today to see how we can help.