If you were wrongfully terminated from your job, you may not be fully aware of your legal rights. West Virginia and many other states across the U.S. have what is called an "employment at will" law. This means that an employer can terminate your position for any reason or no reason at all, as long as the employer doesn't violate the law.
Your employer can't fire you because of your race, ethnicity, religion, creed, disability or sexual orientation. These are protected classes under the laws enforced by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.
Furthermore, an employer can't retaliate against an employee for taking advantage of his or her rights. Sometimes wrongful termination can be a gray area when an employee is being treated unfairly and the evidence can be subtle.
Building a strong wrongful termination case
Building a strong wrongful termination case isn't easy and may require an extensive investigation. The key components to a wrongful termination case include:
- Gathering critical facts. When critical facts are gathered and evidence is presented, it's no longer your word against your employer's. If it seems like you're being set up to be fired, make sure you save and log as much evidence as possible. This includes saving emails and taking note of the following:
- Negative comments or performance reviews from a supervisor
- Sudden changes in your work schedule
- Supervisor assigns your work to someone else
- Being excluded from meetings and company events
- Being passed over for a promotion or denied a raise
- Proof of any complaints you made regarding wrongdoing
- Proof that you were looking for another job after being fired
- Statements from coworkers who may have witnessed unfair treatment
- Legitimizing your claim. It's important that you take the evidence that you have gathered and consult with an experienced employment law attorney. Your attorney can determine if you have a legitimate wrongful termination claim based on the evidence you provide.
- Working out a settlement with your employer. If you were terminated from your job for nefarious reasons, a lawsuit may tarnish your employer's reputation. In many cases, employers will avoid going to trial by working out a settlement with your attorney. In some cases, they may be willing to go to trial if they feel that you don't have a strong enough case. If your case goes to trial, it can take several months or years to settle, especially if your employer decides to appeal a court's decision.
Contact our law firm if you believe you were wrongfully terminated from your job
If you believe that you were wrongfully terminated from your job, a West Virginia attorney at Klie Law Offices can review the details surrounding your termination and help you build a strong case. We handle a wide range of employment law cases including workplace harassment, wage law, discrimination and workplace retaliation.
To schedule your free legal consultation, contact us online.