Articles

Why Is It Important to Consult a Lawyer in Case of a Wrongful Termination?

by Emma L. Business consultant

In case you’ve been recently fired or laid off, you may wonder whether you have any legal claims against your employer. Unfortunately, not all cases fall under wrongful termination. For example, an employee who is fired for attendance problems, poor performance or misconduct – or even for just “it not working out” or “not fitting in” – usually won’t have any recourse against their employers.

However, this doesn’t mean that every firing is legal. Employees can’t be fired for discriminatory reasons, membership in trade unions or in retaliation for making a complaint against their employer. In such situations, an employee can consider consulting with a compensation lawyer. In this post, you will find out what wrongful termination is and when consultations are in order to discover whether you were fired illegally. 

Individuals covered by unlawful termination laws

In most cases, workers who aren't covered by the national workplace system will be covered by unlawful termination laws. These types of workers include:

  • Local and state government employees in Queensland, South Australia, and New South Wales

  • Individuals employed by non-constitutional corporations in Western Australia – workers of sole traders, trusts and partnerships, for example

Workers who are covered by the national workplace system, but who are not eligible to make a general protections application, can still make an application for unlawful termination. Unlawful terminations law definitely doesn’t cover:

  • Contractors

  • Workers who are eligible to make a general protections application

  • Workers who resign and were not forced to do so as to a result of their employer's conduct

  • Individuals who were employed under a contract of employment for a specified time period, a particular task or for the duration of a specified season and who are dismissed at the end of that period, season or task

What is unlawful termination?

Section 772(1) of the Act states that an employer must not terminate a worker’s employment for one or more of the following unlawful reasons:

  • Membership, non-membership or participation in trade union outside working hours.

  • Colour, race, sex, sexual orientation, physical or mental disability, age, family or carer’s responsibilities, marital status, religion, pregnancy, social origin or political opinion

  • Temporary absence from a job because of injury or illness (within the meaning of the Fair Work Regulations 2009), during maternity leave or other parental leave, or for the purpose of engaging in a voluntary emergency management activity

  • The filing of a complaint or the participation in proceedings against the employer involving alleged violations of regulations or laws or recourse to competent administrative authorities

  • Seeking office as, or acting or having acted in the capacity of, an employee representative.

When should you consider talking to a compensation lawyer?

When the circumstances of your termination suggest that it might have been illegal, you may wish to consult with a compensation lawyer. A lawyer can review the facts and assess whether you have any potential legal claims. If so, a lawyer can help you decide whether you want to exercise any of your rights. For instance, you might want to demand a settlement, negotiate a severance package or file administrative complaints or a lawsuit against the employer.

The only way to know for sure how strong your claims are and what choices you have is to consult a compensation lawyer. They will be able to explain to you whether you should press charges or just move on. Situations that should prompt you to consider finding legal help, like statements and actions that suggest you were fired for discriminatory reasons, have already been explained in the previous section.

Preparing yourself when meeting with a compensation lawyer

The crucial thing you need to understand when meeting with a compensation lawyer is to be prepared and speak nothing but the truth. First off, bring copies of all the documentation related to your employment – this includes employee handbooks, termination notices, performance evaluations, contracts, doctor's notes, correspondence between you and your employer, colleagues and customers (including emails).

Next, prepare yourself to tell the whole story. Nobody will understand the facts of the case better than the individual who was victimized. Tell your compensation lawyer everything, even if it doesn’t help your case. It’s better to know the weaknesses in the beginning so your lawyer can downplay them and highlight the facts than make your claim stronger.

Resolving your possible wrongful termination isn't hard. All you need to is to find whether the laws cover you and your case. If the circumstances of your situation even appear unlawful, you can contact a lawyer and see what options stand before you.


About Emma L. Advanced Pro  Business consultant

2 connections, 0 recommendations, 148 honor points.
Joined APSense since, February 18th, 2016, From Sydney, Australia.

Created on Jul 2nd 2019 03:29. Viewed 78 times.

Comments

No comment, be the first to comment.
Please sign in before you comment.