The discretion employers are given when it comes to firing employees is not unlimited. There are certain things employers are prohibited from doing when it comes to firing decisions. For example, certain types of retaliatory firings are illegal and constitute wrongful termination.
A retaliatory firing is when an employer fires an employee as revenge for certain conduct the employee engaged in. Now, not all types of firings done as retaliation qualify as wrongful termination. Retaliatory firings generally are only illegal if the employee conduct they are retaliation for is a protected activity.
- Reporting illegal workplace discrimination (like racial discrimination).
- Reporting workplace sexual harassment.
- Exercising one’s leave rights under the Family Medical Leave Act.
- Reporting suspected work safety violations.
- Participation in lawsuits involving alleged illegal employer practices.
- Participation in government investigations involving alleged illegal employer practices.
- Participation in hearings involving alleged illegal employer practices.
When an employee is fired in retaliation for engaging in a given activity, it can be very important for them to know whether or not the activity in question is a protected one, as individuals wrongfully terminated in retaliation for a protected activity have certain legal rights. Employment law attorneys can provide fired workers here in Texas with information on what activities are protected activities when it comes to retaliation law and give them guidance on whether they have legal options in relation to their firing.