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What Qualifies as Wrongful Termination?

Anyone can tell you that being fired is a stressful experience. In addition to the obvious financial loss, unemployment can cause a person’s confidence to be shaken and their professional reputation to be damaged. Job termination can be especially painful if you believe you were let go without a good reason. If you feel that you have been discriminated against or that your employer fired you for retaliatory purposes, you may want to consider suing your ex-employer for wrongful termination.  There are a few circumstances that you will want to consider when deciding whether or not a lawsuit is necessary.

What is meant by At-Will employment?

The state of Texas is an “at-will” state when it comes to employment law. This means that either the employee or employer may end the working relationship at any time, for any reason. There are a few exceptions to the rules. An employer may not fire you for taking time off for voting or to participate in an emergency evacuation. Your employer may not fire you for refusing to participate in genetic testing at work. A company may not fire you for blowing the whistle on them if they have broken the law.

Knowing when to File a Complaint

If a company has violated your civil rights, you may want to consider a lawsuit. There are a few reasons for termination that are considered legitimate civil rights violations.

Discrimination

Although there may be many things an employer might dislike about an employee, there are certain reasons for which a person may not be fired.  The Civil Rights Act. was originally passed as a way to establish equal access to public places. As time progressed, the law was modified to protect workers’ rights and to include the protection of women.

If you think you were fired from a job because of your religion, or your country of origin, you should file a complaint with the EEOC office or with the Texas Workforce Commission—Civil Rights Division. The two offices share work equally, so it should not matter which office you choose. In the State of Texas, you have 180 days from the time when you believe the discrimination began. Federal law allows you 300 days to file, but it is wise to adhere to the state law. Once the claim is filed, you must allow the office 180 days to investigate your claim. If your case violates federal law, it may be removed and sent to Federal Court.

After you have filed your claim, the office you filed with will investigate your claim and send you either a letter of dismissal or a right to sue letter. If you get a right to sue letter, you can proceed to court.

Retaliation

If your employer fired you because you turned them in for violating the law, they have violated the WhistleBlower Protection Act. You can file a lawsuit in federal court.

Breach of Contract

If you have a written contract with your employer and that contract specified that your job will begin and end on a certain date, you may be able to sue that employer for breach of contract. It is a good idea to have an employment lawyer in Dallas look over the agreement that you had. They will be able to tell you if the contract will hold up in court and develop a strategy to negotiate with your employer.

What to Look for in a Lawyer

Be sure to select an attorney with a stellar reputation with the state bar and with their former clients. You should also select someone with years of experience in employment law. With the right representation, you can get the money you are entitled to and move on with your career.

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