Fairfax Wrongful Termination Lawyer
Despite all the laws in place to protect employees, wrongful termination is unfortunately quite common in the workplace. Often, employees are terminated for reasons they may not understand, which can make it difficult to understand how if you were wrongfully termination.
A dedicated Fairfax wrongful termination lawyer from the Spiggle Law Firm may be able to help you understand your firing and whether it was lawful or not. If you have a viable claim to pursue, one of our employment attorneys could work to protect you and your right not to be terminated without just cause.
Understanding the Doctrine of Employment At-Will
Fairfax County follows the doctrine of “at-will” employment. Generally, this means an employee can be terminated without notice at virtually any time. Similarly, employees are at liberty to leave their job at any time, for any reason or no reason at all.
At-will employment is limited to employment relationships that do not utilize a contract. Usually, an employment contract will outline the processes regarding termination. However, even at-will employees can be victims of wrongful termination.
At-Will Employment and Wrongful Termination
In most wrongful termination claims, an employee must generally demonstrate two elements to be successful. Specifically, they must show proof of employment and that their termination was connected to their participation in a protected form of conduct—both of which could apply to an “at-will” employee.
All employees who believe they were wrongfully terminated must prove the presence of these two factors to have a valid case. In these scenarios, it may be beneficial to enlist a Fairfax wrongful termination attorney to help collect and sort evidence that supports your claim.
Violations of Anti-Discrimination Laws
The employment at-will doctrine does not shield employers if it is established that the termination involved anti-discrimination law violations. Many wrongful terminations law claims in Virginia involve anti-discrimination laws such as:
- Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Title VII), which prohibits discrimination based on sex and gender
- Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA), which prohibits discrimination against individuals over the age of 40
- Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), which prohibits discrimination against individuals with disabilities
- Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA), which prohibits discrimination against those who use protected leave
Together, these laws help to establish legally protected classes, such as gender, sex, race, religion, national origin, color, age, disability, and pregnancy. Generally, a claim for wrongful termination can arise when an employee is fired for exercising any of their rights under these laws. In this cases, a wrongful termination lawyer in Fairfax County may be able to aid in collecting evidence—including legal testimony—to demonstrate that an employer’s motive behind a termination was discriminatory in nature.
When an employee is treated adversely for exercising their rights under the law, their employer may be engaging in unlawful retaliation. Retaliation encompasses a variety of actions such as demotions, pay reduction, harassment, and termination. Our Fairfax County wrongful termination lawyers may be able to provide insight if you are unsure what employer actions constitute retaliation.
For example, if you are terminated because you reported or opposed your employer’s discriminatory conduct, you may have a valid wrongful termination claim. Employees who participate in discriminatory conduct investigations, such as offering evidence or testimony, are also protected.
How a Fairfax Wrongful Termination Attorney Could Help
Losing your job can be devasting, especially if the termination is unjustified. Fortunately, Spiggle Law Firm’s dedicated employment attorneys could assist you in your wrongful termination claim by collecting evidence on your behalf and providing insight into anti-discrimination laws and protected classes.
If you have questions regarding your status as an at-will employee, contact our offices and request a meeting with a Fairfax wrongful termination lawyer. Alternatively, click here to use our Case Assessment Calculator and get a sense of what you may be able to receive through a successful case.