3 Things You Need to Know About Wrongful Termination

Have you been wrongfully terminated? It's important to understand your rights during this time. If you have been terminated through no fault of your own, it may be time to reach out to an employment attorney for guidance. Here's what you need to know.

Whether you love your job or you really can't stand it, facing a termination can be incredibly difficult. For most adults, job termination is unexpected and stressful. It puts you in the difficult position of evaluating your finances and finding a new position. In some cases, you may need to file for unemployment to pay your bills while you search for a new position. What happens when you're terminated through no fault of your own? There are laws in place designed to protect you from wrongful termination. Losing your job due to discrimination or harassment is illegal and an employment attorney can help you decide what your next steps should be. In some cases, you may need to go to court. Sometimes you can your former employer can settle the case without stepping foot in a courtroom. Here's what you need to know.

1. It is illegal to fire someone who is pregnant.

If you get pregnant while employed, you are generally not required to notify your supervisor that you are pregnant unless your pregnancy interferes with your ability to perform your regular work duties. If your boss harasses you about the pregnancy or terminates your employment due to the pregnancy, this is called pregnancy discrimination. Employers may not fire pregnant employees who are able to continue performing their regular job duties. For example, if you work at an office and are able to answer the phones and file your paperwork on time, your employer cannot use your pregnancy as a reason to fire you from that position.

2. It is illegal to fire someone based on race.

Have you been harassed at work due to your ethnicity? Understand that it is illegal to tease, make fun of, or harass someone at work based on their race. If you work in a hostile environment where you are harassed for your ethnicity, this negativity can lead to an illegal termination of employment. Always let your attorney know if you were treated poorly at work prior to being fired, as this can influence your case.

3. It is illegal to fire someone based on their gender.

Regardless of your gender identity, your employer cannot use this as a reason to fire you. You have the right to work safely at your job regardless of your gender. Furthermore, your employer cannot harass you or discriminate against you based on your gender. The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission notes that simple teasing or off-hand remarks are not illegal. Understand, however, that if you are being routinely harassed at work to the point that it affects your performance, this is not permissible or legal.

Keep in mind that in some cases, it's legal to fire employees without advanced notice or without a reason given. If you believe your job was terminated due to a discriminatory reason, it's time to contact an employment lawyer who can evaluate your case and talk with you about your options. You deserve to move forward after being fired. Your lawyer will help you do that.