Assisting Workers Who Have Been Wrongfully Terminated
Generally, at-will employees can be fired for any reason or no reason. There are several statutory exceptions to the at-will employment rule. If you were wrongfully terminated, you need to speak with an employment law attorney who can protect your rights.
At Karpf, Karpf & Cerutti, P.C., our employment lawyers have more than 100 years of legal experience in Pennsylvania, New Jersey and New York. We will help you determine if you were wrongfully terminated and then create a personalized strategy for your case. You can call us now at 215-639-0801 for our Pennsylvania office or 609-683-4022 for our New Jersey office.
Understanding Wrongful Termination
Most workers are at-will employees who can generally be terminated unless they are fired because they are part of a protected class or have other specific situations. For example, at-will employees generally cannot be terminated because of their age, race, sex, religion, disability, for taking a qualified medical leave, for objecting to a polygraph test as a condition of employment, for serving on a jury, for fulfilling military duties if employed by the military or merely for having a criminal conviction. Employers will often not state that they are firing a worker because they are part of a protected class, so it is critical that you have a lawyer who will investigate every detail of your employment and termination.
A few other exceptions to at-will employment include:
- Contracts: Employees may also have legal recourse if they had an employment contract that an employer breached (or are part of a union). Even in the absence of an express contract, there are rare occasions when an employer’s handbook (or other documents) may create contract rights.
- Public Policy Exceptions: Employers are not permitted to terminate employees if the termination will violate important and established public policies. For example, state and federal employees cannot be fired for making or refusing to make certain statements of public concern. In many situations, it is also generally illegal to fire or punish an employee for seeking worker’s compensation or unemployment compensation, for reporting safety violations in the workplace, and for refusing to engage in or commit a crime.
The above information does not represent an inclusive or a complete list of grounds for wrongful termination. Many state laws, such as New Jersey’s Conscientious Employee Protection Act, provide far broader protections to at-will employees. Because of the many federal and state laws that may be at play in your case, it is essential that you work with a lawyer who has a wide breadth of knowledge.
Talk To A Lawyer Now
You can schedule your free consultation at any of our offices now by contacting our firm. You can call our Pennsylvania office 215-639-0801 or call the New Jersey office at 609-683-4022 for our New Jersey office. We can also be reached by email.