Wrongful Termination and Retaliation
Employment termination can have a huge impact on many aspects of a person’s life, including their finances, access to benefits, and emotional well-being. While Texas is one of many that is classified as an at-will employment state, there are employment laws in place that protect workers from being fired for certain reasons, including retaliation.
Wrongful termination involving retaliation is illegal in all 50 states, whether they are an at-will employment state or not. Wrongful termination lawyer Dan A. Atkerson can assist employees from Allen, TX, and surrounding areas in getting the financial compensation they are due after being illegally fired from their position.
What Is Classified as Retaliation?
At-will employment allows employers to let an employee go without giving any advance notice, or providing any reason for the termination. Despite this leeway, there are numerous federal laws in place that make it illegal to fire an employee for certain protected activities.
Wrongful termination involving retaliation is defined as taking adverse action against an employee (i.e. firing them, demoting them, denying them a promotion) as an act of punishment or revenge for the employee’s involvement in legally protected activities.
Activities that are legally protected under employment laws include:
- Making a report or complaint about safety conditions, harassment, or the work environment in general
- Participating in an investigation regarding the employer’s discriminatory practices
- Taking qualified leave, such as sick time, vacation time, or a family or medical leave of absence
Proving Wrongful Termination Involving Retaliation
Employers are well aware that termination as an act of retaliation is illegal, so they are highly unlikely to admit that is the reason for letting an employee go. The best way for employees to prove that their termination was an act of retaliation is to work with a knowledgeable employment law attorney, such as Dan A. Atkerson.
When working on a case involving wrongful termination and retaliation for his Plano clients, Mr. Atkerson must demonstrate three key factors:
- The employee engaged in a legally protected activity
- The employee was terminated or punished in some other way, such as being demoted
- The termination or punishment was retaliation for the employee’s involvement in the legally protected activity
Proving the link between involvement in the protected activity and employment termination is the trickiest part of a wrongful termination trial, because employers are often quick to offer up a valid reason for the firing. To prove that a termination was an act of retaliation, Mr. Atkerson may rely on a number of different types of evidence, including employee performance records, inter-office communications, and witness testimony.
Damages for Losses
Frisco employees who have been wrongfully terminated as a form of retaliation have the right to pursue financial compensation for resulting damages. Damages in a wrongful termination case may include compensation for lost wages, compensation for lost benefits, and compensation for emotional distress stemming from the termination.
Get In Touch
If you have recently been terminated and believe that it was an act of retaliation, attorney Dan A. Atkerson can help you explore your legal options. To find out if you have grounds for a wrongful termination lawsuit, send us a message at your earliest convenience or call (214) 383-3606 to schedule a consultation.