14 Apr 2015

What is the Wrongful Discharge Exception to At Will Employment?

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Doing any research about wrongful discharge in Palm Beach will provide you some basic information about at-will employment contracts. This concept refers to situations where employers retain the right to fire an employee at any time and for any reason. This seems quite broad, and it is not entirely true, because an employer cannot violate certain laws and regulations in terminating an employee.

This is what is known as a wrongful discharge, and it is the big exception to this at-will employment protection that employers maintain. In order to be successful in a wrongful discharge claim, an employee must prove that his or her firing was as a result of an employer’s retaliation, bad faith, or malice. The employee may also need to demonstrate that he or she was terminated for refusing to engage in a protected act, like whistleblowing.

One of the most common elements in wrongful discharge cases has to do with discrimination on the grounds of a protected class. Employers are not supposed to discriminate against individuals for their membership in what is known as a protected class like race or gender, but these kinds of issues are still prevalent today. These can be especially difficult cases to argue, which is why any individual who believes he or she has grounds for a wrongful discharge claim should have their case evaluated by a legal professional.

While it is true that employers using at-will employment contracts do have a lot of leeway over hiring and firing, they are not allowed to violate laws in the course of their actions. To determine whether you were fired illegally, you need to discuss your evidence with your attorney.