Virginia Constructive Wrongful Termination Lawyer
Deciding to quit your job is a difficult decision to make. Every day many people choose to resign from their current job positions. However, most of those people are not faced with a work environment that is so unbearable they are forced to decide to leave. Constructive termination, or constructive dismissal, occurs when an employee is forced to resign due to intolerable working conditions. Employers are not required to maintain a pleasant, low stress environment for their employees, but they are required to act in accordance with established employment laws.
If you have left your place of employment because the working conditions have become intolerable, you may have a claim for constructive wrongful termination. Our Virginia constructive wrongful termination lawyers are devoted to helping employees seek justice and strive to ensure that the workplace is a tolerable environment for everyone. A dedicated wrongful termination attorney could help gather evidence that clearly illustrates the hostile work environment that forced you to leave.
Understanding Constructive Termination
Virginia recognizes the concept of constructive termination. Like traditional wrongful termination, it cites employer misconduct as the reason for leaving. However, there are a few key distinctions.
The legal theory of constructive termination was developed to provide a cause of actions for employees who were not actually terminated, but nonetheless had to leave positions because of intolerable conditions in the workplace. Generally, the burden of proof lies with the employee. To have a successful claim they must prove that they were in an illegal hostile work environment, were mistreated, and/or that the employer was in breach of contract.
How Virginia’s Practice of Employment At-Will Affects Claims
Under the doctrine of employment at-will in Virginia, employees can be terminated for any reason. The exception to this general rule is that employees may not be terminated for an unlawful reason. Wrongful termination is a well-established exception to employment at-will.
Constructive discharge or termination however, does not automatically violate the employment at-will doctrine. Employees usually must demonstrate some sort of underlying illegal conduct to successfully argue a constructive termination claim. For more information, contact a constructive termination lawyer in Virginia.
How to Document Factors That Created a Hostile Work Environment
Employees experiencing intolerable conditions at the workplace should maintain thorough records of all events leading up to their departure. This can help establish a pattern of egregious conduct. Successful claims for constructive termination must be able to demonstrate that continuing in the role was extremely challenging or altogether impossible.
Typically, an isolated incident will be insufficient to establish a hostile work environment. However, an exceptionally severe incident may be adequate depending on the specific circumstances.
Employees should also document whether they reported the intolerable conditions to a supervisor or other employees. Employers should generally be given the opportunity to correct these conditions prior to the employee’s departure for a claim to be viable.
Analyzing Constructive Wrongful Termination Claims
Constructive wrongful termination claims are generally more difficult to prove than basic wrongful termination claims. The court will usually analyze several different factors when determining whether a valid claim for constructive termination exists. The nature of the employer’s conduct and the timing of the employee’s departure are some factors that may be considered.
The employer’s behavior must also generally be objectively egregious. If a reasonable person would not have felt compelled to leave given the situation, it will likely not be enough to support a constructive wrongful termination claim.
Speak with a Virginia Constructive Termination Attorney Today
We understand how frustrating it can be to deal with problems in the workplace. Moreover, we know that if your job was so unbearable that you had to quit, the consequences may feel overwhelming. If you believe you are the victim of constructive wrongful termination, our lawyers want to meet with you to discuss your potential claim.
A Virginia constructive termination lawyer’s evaluation of your case can provide helpful guidance. Our people are here to listen to your experiences and help you take the appropriate and necessary legal action against your employer. If you would like your case reviewed by our attorneys, call today.