Wrongful Termination in Rochester, NY

What Is Wrongful Termination?

Any employer has discretion over the hiring and firing of employees. Still, there are certain circumstances where a worker can file for wrongful termination. Termination becomes wrongful when it violates New York law, federal law, or an employment agreement. Being fired from a job is never easy. A dedicated wrongful termination lawyer understands your rights as an employee and will fight to protect them.

According to the New York Attorney General, employment in Rochester is typically at-will. However, there are several exceptions. Your employer cannot fire you for illegal reasons, including:

  • Discrimination
  • In breach of an employment contract or collective bargaining agreement
  • As a penalty for filing a worker’s compensation or disability claim
  • In retaliation for reporting a safety or health violation

Types Of Wrongful Termination

In Rochester, there are many different instances where wrongful termination can take place. In some cases, an employer is ignorant of labor laws and may not even realize they have erred. This is why big corporations rely on human resources experts. You should always turn to an attorney if you suspect wrongful termination. In the following paragraphs are some of the red flags that you should watch out for.

Limitations of At-Will Employment

Because one of the most common forms of employment is at-will, there are limitations to this. At-will employment doesn’t allow an employer to fire a person for any discriminatory reason. State, federal, or local Rochester laws prohibit these reasons.

Unlike some states, New York does not have Right to Work laws. However, the National Labor Relations Act protects your right to make your own decision about union membership. This means that your Rochester employer cannot force you to join a union. Nevertheless, they can require you to pay union dues or an agency fee, regardless of your membership status.

An employer also can’t fire an employee as a form of retaliation for reporting any illegal activities within the company. Were you fired for any of these reasons? If so, you may be able to file a wrongful termination lawsuit against your employer.

Discrimination

Discrimination is one of the most common forms of wrongful termination. When an employee is fired because of their race, religion, sex, national origin, ethnicity, pregnancy, age, or disability, it violates established laws meant to protect specific personal characteristics. There are also some states that prohibit employers from discriminating based on the gender identity or the sexual orientation of their employees.

If you believe that you have been penalized or fired in Rochester for one of these discriminatory reasons listed above, you may be able to file a claim with the United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. An experienced Rochester, NY attorney can walk you through the process to help ensure the best possible outcome.

Retaliation

Your employer can’t fire you for certain protected activities. For example, your employer can’t fire you for taking medical leave, or for participating in an investigation of job violations and wage violations. Additionally, filing a complaint with the EEOC, or informing your employer about discrimination or harassment, are not fireable offenses. 

According to the New York City Bar Association, New York has several state laws that protect Rochester employees from retaliation. These whistleblower laws prohibit employers from firing employees who report certain violations. For example, one statute protects healthcare workers who report substandard patient care. In addition, multiple laws protect employees who report fraud.

There are some states that also prevent employee termination for taking time off to vote, perform jury duties, or serve in the military. You also have some protection if your employer has fired you for reporting a violation of safety laws or environmental regulations.

What To Do If You’ve Been Wrongfully Terminated In Rochester, New York

Have you been wrongfully terminated? You may be entitled to compensatory damages, reinstatement, back pay, and other forms of relief. However, the exact definition of wrongful termination will depend on where you live. To find out, contact a dedicated and qualified wrongful termination lawyer in Rochester, NY. Discuss your circumstances and the laws that your employer has to follow in your area.

Remember that there are usually time constraints on how long you can wait to file your claim, so don’t delay. This could cause evidence to slip through your fingers or you may miss the deadline altogether. You want a favorable outcome and so will your lawyer, so try to approach your case as proactively as possible, even before you are certain you have one.

If you are filing a Rochester discrimination claim under New York’s civil rights laws, you generally have one year to do so. However, if your claim involves sexual harassment or other sex discrimination, you have 3 years to file. In addition, if you are filing a federal claim with the EEOC, you may only have 180 days.

Step One: Gather Evidence

It’s important to start gathering all the evidence you can, no matter how small. Ideally, you had reason to suspect that your employer might terminate you wrongfully and started the process some time before. If you need to return to the office to clear out your desk or still have access to the work email, use the opportunity wisely. However, be mindful of any employment agreements or confidentiality issues.

Step Two: Find an Attorney

Hiring an experienced Rochester, NY wrongful termination lawyer will help you take the first steps so that you make a strong case to get the outcome you seek. Rochester employment laws are intricate and are constantly changing. Therefore, you should always work with an attorney who focuses on this specific area.

Step Three: File a Complaint

If you have not yet had your case reviewed by an attorney, the EEOC built a self-evaluation tool to help you decide if filing a claim with them is an appropriate way to handle your case. An attorney simplifies this part of the process by helping you to write the complaint. You serve your employer notice. Then, the resolution process starts there. Note that not all cases make it to a courtroom as some employers prefer to settle.

There are several options for filing discriminatory termination complaints in Rochester. Both the Civil Rights Division of the Attorney General’s Office and the New York State Division of Human Rights investigate these claims. In addition, you can also file a federal claim with the EEOC. Unfortunately, there is no location in Rochester, but there is a local office in Buffalo.

Why You Should Hire a Wrongful Termination Lawyer in Rochester, NY

Filing a wrongful termination lawsuit in Rochester, New York can be overwhelming, especially if you’ve been treated unfairly by your employer. Speaking to an experienced lawyer can help you to understand what legal rights you have as a victim and if your case is applicable for wrongful termination. For some people, the opportunity to have someone listen also helps to ease the burden they’ve been carrying.

We understand that finding the right attorney can be hard. This is why we created our service to connect clients in need with experienced attorneys. To match with the right lawyer, you simply provide your location, category, and some other additional information. We then send you your options as soon as they are available.

Our company charges no fees to connect you with the legal services you need. Some Rochester attorneys or practice areas may require legal fees upfront, but there are many that do not. Some professionals may not charge a single penny at all until they win your case.

Are you ready to find a qualified Rochester attorney who can help you fight for your job or get justice for the wrongful termination you suffered?

Submit a request online or call us today at (866) 345-6784 to get in touch with an experienced wrongful termination lawyer in Rochester, NY!

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