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Wrongful Termination

Most Americans work for an employer without the benefit of an employment contract. Such at-will employment provides little protection to employees who can be terminated at the whim or caprice of employers. Recent Court decisions over the last several years however, have limited an employer's ability to terminate at-will employees. These judicially created limitations fall into three categories: 1) an implied contract of continued employment; 2) termination contrary to public policy; and 3) termination in violation of good faith and fair dealing.

A Promise Not to Terminate
This can be implied from the employer's conduct and communications reflecting assurances of continued employment and job security; such as consistent promotions; favorable personnel evaluations; and length of employment.

Public Policy
Public Policy violations occur where termination is in retaliation for an employee exercising a recognized right. Courts will limit the employer's right to terminate where it is based on the employees exercise of a statutory right or refusal to violate a statute - the whistle blower violation. Examples of public policy violation include retaliation for the assertion of workers health and safety laws, wage loss claims, union membership, workers compensation claims, and reporting unethical or unsafe practices.

Good Faith and Fair Dealing
A violation of the implied covenant of Good Faith and Fair Dealings occurs where an employer without justification terminates an employee, prompted by a conscious and deliberate act that unfairly frustrates the purpose of employment and denies the employee the benefit of the employment. An employer must act fairly and in good faith.

The law attempts to limit an employer from acting in an unfair and malicious manner. Legal precedence exists to protect employees from unfair employment practices. We are available to evaluate your rights arising from your employment.

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