Although many people live in “at-will” states, they can still be wrongfully terminated. At-will means you can be fired for any reason that the employer sees fit.
However, there are times when they have to justify your termination. For instance, according to hkm.com, you can’t be fired without justification if you are part of a protected class.
If you had an excellent interview, worked without issue for a long time, and then started having problems out of nowhere, then there is probably a case to be made for wrongful termination. If you feel like you have a case, you must act quickly. This article will cover the first steps to take if you have been wrongly terminated.
#1: Don’t Sign Anything
When you are terminated, there could be some kind of severance package or even a form of NDA that they may ask you to sign. Some of the documents may seem to benefit you, but you shouldn’t sign anything. Before you sign a document, you need to take it to a lawyer.
Remember that if you were wrongfully terminated, there is no way that these papers will be for your benefit in any way. In many cases, you will be asked to sign away some rights that you have. In which case, it will be hard to do anything about your case.
You could inadvertently be signing away your right to sue them or to receive any compensation for damages in exchange for a severance package. Although you may decide it is a good idea to sign off, don’t do so until you understand what you are signing by having them reviewed by a lawyer.
#2: Keep Detailed Records
There is usually some type of action or incident that happen before you are wrongfully terminated. This means that it is a good idea to start making detailed records of anything that seems suspicious to you.
Then, when you are actually fired, you will have some evidence to give to an attorney or to your local labor office to make a claim.
You should also try to save any messages sent by email or SMS to build your case. Check for any witnesses to your firing or anything leading up to it. You should get a statement from them.
#3: Don’t Go to Court On Your Own
Filing a claim with your local labor division will help to open a case against your employer. This is because they committed a crime by firing you when you’re in a protected class.
However, a lawyer must bring a civil case to court so you can sue for damages. If you are heading in that direction. Make sure to talk to a lawyer quickly.
Then they can see if they think you have a case. Afterward, they will instruct you on what you need to do to move things forward.