Unless contractual obligations exist, employees in New Jersey are considered “at-will.” An employer can fire an at-will employee at any time for any reason or no reason at all. However, employers in New Jersey are prohibited from terminating employees for unlawful reasons. If an employer fires you for an illegal reason, you may have a wrongful termination claim. If an employer terminates your employment for an unlawful reason, you can file a wrongful termination claim and recover compensation. This article discusses the dos and don’ts of wrongful termination.
What Qualifies as Wrongful Termination in New Jersey?
Before going into the dos and don’ts of wrongful termination, it is crucial that we discuss what qualifies as wrongful termination in NJ. In New Jersey, there are two main reasons why a termination may be considered unlawful.
First, it is illegal to fire an employee for discriminatory reasons. Employers in New Jersey are prohibited from discriminating against employees based on their protected characteristics, including race, age, sex, ancestry, color, familial status, religion, national origin, and marital status.
Second, an employer cannot fire an employee for retaliatory reasons. It is unlawful for an employer to fire an employee for reporting harassment or discrimination. An employer cannot fire an employee for taking a leave of absence, whistleblowing, or making disability or religious-based accommodations requests.
The Basics of Wrongful Termination
If you have been wrongfully terminated and wish to pursue a wrongful termination claim, you need to understand what you should do and avoid doing. Knowing what to do and what not to do can ensure you recover the justice and compensation you deserve. Below are some basic tips for wrongful termination cases.
Keep a Record of Everything
One of the most crucial things in a wrongful termination case is evidence. Evidence can help support your claim. In fact, without evidence, you cannot prove your case and thus get justice and compensation. Ensure you retain as much evidence as possible. This includes, among others, emails, memos, other correspondence between you and the employer, performance evaluations, and proof of your excellent work.
Hire a Wrongful Termination Attorney
A qualified New Jersey employment lawyer can help protect your rights. They can evaluate your case, help you file your claim on time, and guide you through the legal process. A skilled attorney can help you fight for the justice and compensation you deserve.
It might be tempting to confront the employer. However, you should avoid confrontations. Confronting the employer can adversely affect your case.
Do Not Delay Action
Do not delay reaching out to an attorney. Remember, there are time limitations for initiating wrongful termination claims in New Jersey. If you delay consulting an attorney and thus filing your claim, you could jeopardize your case. You could be barred from recovering compensation if you wait too long to file your wrongful termination claim.
Do Not Take Retaliatory Action Against the Employer
For example, do not damage the employer’s property or threaten them. Such behavior can harm your wrongful termination case.
Do Not Discuss Details of Your Case With Others
You might violate confidentiality agreements or harm your case if you talk about your case with other people.
Do Not Sign Anything You Do Not Understand
Finally, do not sign documents that you do not fully understand. Before signing any document, make sure you consult with an attorney.
Contact a New Jersey Employment Lawyer
Have you been wrongfully terminated? Contact our qualified New Jersey employment lawyer for legal help.