If you are like many Americans, you work hard for the money you earn. Getting fired without any warning can cause you to feel upset, overwhelmed, and angry. Even though many states follow an “at will” policy when it comes to being terminated from your job, it doesn’t mean that you don’t have any recourse. You only have a short period of time to file a claim with the appropriate agency. It may feel as if you have had the rug pulled out from underneath you. Start taking stock of the situation right away, so you can gain the advantage.
Stay Focused and Calm
Letting your emotions get the better of you is the worst thing you can do. Angry outbursts or aggressive behavior can make you look like an unruly employee. Acting desperate will also look bad for you and can cost you in the end if it makes you look guilty of something you didn’t do. Wait until you are away from the workplace before you let your emotions take control. Take a deep breath and immediately start assessing the situation. Plan your next moves accordingly.
Ask for an Explanation
Depending on the situation, you may be able to call your former employer and ask for a verbal explanation of why you were fired. If you are thinking of pursuing legal action, it is in your best interest to write a letter and formally ask for an explanation in writing. Their written response can be given to your attorney to help support your case. If they refuse to provide you with a response or a reason as to why they let you go, clearly document what you receive, if anything, in your notes.
Gather Your Evidence
As soon as you receive your termination notice whether it is written or verbal, start gathering your evidence. If you feel as if you were fired unfairly, talk to others who have been in your shoes. It’s doubtful that you are the only one who has been wrongfully terminated. Talk to as many people as you can and find out what their experiences were. See if they will testify on your behalf. Document as much as you can, especially for the time period leading up to your termination.
File a Complaint with the Right Agency or Organization
Many companies will try and eliminate employees who uncover unsafe or unfair business practices. If you know you are working in an unsafe environment, the appropriate agency to contact is OSHA. In some situations, you may need to contact your state’s Labor Board. The Labor Board will address both the working conditions as well as why you were fired. There may be situations where there was no reason for your termination. If this is the case, hiring an attorney may be your next step.
Hire a Trusted Attorney
Hiring a reputable and trusted attorney will ensure you receive the compensation you deserve. They will be able to obtain documents and digital files you may not be able to. A good attorney will know what agencies you will need to be in contact with when it comes to sharing important information. Your attorney will answer all your questions and ensure all deadlines are met once you file your case.If you have been fired without a reason, you will want to hire an attorney who specializes in wrongful termination cases. They will have the experience you need to handle the toughest cases. The right lawyer will know how to approach the situation and bring about the most positive and productive results.
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