While most employers can terminate employees for most any reason, there are times when wrongful termination takes place.
If you have been terminated because of workplace retaliation, you can pursue a claim against your employer to recoup compensation for your damages.
There are many reasons that employers may want to retaliate. Here are a few reasons that an employer may retaliate against an employee:
- Communicating with a manager or supervisor about being subjected to harassment or discrimination
- Filing or being a witness in an EEO complaint, investigation, charge, or lawsuit
- Refusing to follow orders that would lead to discrimination or harassment
- Resisting sexual advances or intervening in sexual harassment to protect others
- Requesting accommodations because of a disability or because of religious beliefs
- Asking coworkers or managers about salary information to uncover wages that are discriminatory
If any of these apply, you could be considered a whistleblower. Whistleblowers are protected from retaliation and wrongful treatment from employers.
If you have been retaliated against, you will want to file a complaint right away. You will need to contact the EEOC and let them know what has happened.
You may have initially filed a complaint with the EEOC before because of your employer’s actions or wrongdoing, which may have involved sexual harassment or discrimination.
Retaliation That Could Occur At Work
The Equal Employment Opportunity (EOO) laws prohibit employers from discriminating against employees and job applicants.
EEO laws prohibit employers from punishing applicants or employees because they asserted their rights.
The employers cannot discriminate, harass, or mistreat applicants or workers for these reasons. Asserting these EEO rights is referred to as “protected activity.” There are many forms of protected activity.
You should maintain documentation and supporting evidence for your claim. This will help you show that you reported the incident and that you simply asserted your rights and did what was best.
It is your duty and responsibility to report any unethical or illegal actions. Be sure to maintain evidence of the events that you reported, and what happened. Witness statements, copies of memos and messages.
If you don’t have supporting evidence and documentation, it will be difficult to prove your claim and to successfully recover your damages from your employer.
You should always keep of file of work-related documents because you may need them later if a situation should as retaliation should occur.
What To Do After Being Fired Because of Retaliation
To have a successful claim against your employer who has fired you as retaliation, you will need to gather evidence proving that your employer is in violation.
You will need to gather all documents, including employment agreements, handbooks, memos, messages, photos, witness statements, and so forth.
You should keep track of your employer’s behavior, making note off all actions including remarks and inappropriate behaviors.
You will want to review the employer’s history and determine if this is consistent with their actions.
If this has been done by the employer before, it can help your claim. You will want to provide supporting evidence that indicates that it is commonplace behavior for your employer.
As an example, if you are retaliated against because of your claim against sexual harassment, you will need to provide details about the sexual harassment claim and, also about the retaliation.
Provide details about you reporting the harassment and the response from the employer after you made the complaint.
You will need to be able to back up your claim and prove what happened and the details leading up to the retaliatory act.
Speak With An Employment Law Attorney
If you have been the victim of retaliation that lead to your being terminated from your job, you should enlist the help of an employment law attorney.
An employment law attorney will be familiar with the state and federal laws that apply to your specific situation.
An attorney will review the details of your case and will help you have a successful claim against your employer for their retaliation against you.
When you speak with an employment law attorney, you should go over their payment plans.
Some employment law attorneys will ask for a retainer to be paid upfront, but there are some employment law attorneys who take cases on a contingency basis, which means that they will not get paid until you win your claim.
There is a limited time to pursue a claim against your employer after they have retaliated against you. Complete the Free Case Evaluation Form on this page to share details with an employment law attorney who represents clients in your area.