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When is a firing considered to be a wrongful termination?

On Behalf of | Aug 22, 2019 | Employment Law

When individuals in Michigan and elsewhere are hired for a new position, it is likely their intention to maintain this job until he or she seeks other employment. Unfortunately, some employees are let go or fired for various reasons. While there are many legal reasons to fire an employee, employers should note when and how it would be unlawful to terminate an employee.

When is a firing considered to be a wrongful termination? The main reason one might suspect a wrongful termination is when a firing is discriminatory. This means that a person was fired based on a protected characteristic, such as their race, gender, sexual orientation, religion and other similar characteristics.

Additionally, a wrongful hiring could occur due to retaliation. This occurs when an employee files a complaint for discrimination or harassment or they blew the whistle on their employer. There are laws that protect employees in these situations, as firing an employee as retaliation for filing a complaint is unlawful.

While at-will employees could be terminated at any time without cause, those with an employment agreement in place could assert an unlawful firing. If the terms of the contract or agreement that promised an employee job security is violated, this could also be considered a wrongful termination.

Dealing with employment law issues can be complex. When an employee believes that they were wrongfully terminated, he or she may be able to take legal action. He or she could prove that their firing was in fact unlawful. Additionally, it might be possible to seek damages for the losses suffered because of the wrongful termination.