At some point in our lives, most of us will know what it’s like to lose their job. Maybe you got fired from a fast-food restaurant when you were younger. Or you may have lost your job as an adult. Either way, it can be devastating. Sure, when you’re a teenager, it may have an impact on your life, but you don’t have the same responsibilities adults have. You may have to worry about gas money and date money. That’s a lot different from losing a job when you’re expected to house, feed and clothe a family. Connecticut employment lawyers get calls all the time from people who feel they were wrongfully discharged. Unfortunately, we don’t often have the news they want to hear.
Connecticut, like so many other states, is an “at-will” state. This just means that employers and employees can terminate their relationship at any time and for any reason. Typically, the issue is only brought up in a legal way when someone is fired from their job. We don’t often talk to clients who want to pursue an employee for damages for quitting their job. If you’re one of the millions who have lost their job this year, you should call and talk to our office right away.
Connecticut is an At-Will State
As briefly noted above, Connecticut is an at-will state. This means that your employer can fire you at any time. They don’t need to give you notice. They certainly don’t need to pay you severance. In fact, depending on the reason for why you were fired, you may not be able to collect unemployment either. Of course, with the COVID pandemic wreaking havoc on the country, most claims are being approved. But there’s never a guarantee. And the pandemic unemployment assistance isn’t going to last forever. You’ll need to find a new way to pay your bills. If you feel you were let go for no good reason, you’ll be tempted to call a Connecticut employment lawyer.
Employers Can Fire Employees for Just About Any Reason
Most people aren’t surprised when they’re fired. They may have an attendance issue and have received writeups for this very thing. Or they work in sales and their numbers have been bad for months. But other times, people are totally surprised when they learn they’re being fired. They have no idea they did anything wrong until their boss lets them go. When you ask for a reason, they’ll likely just say that things “aren’t going well” or “it’s best that we part ways.”
As horrible as it may seem, your employer is allowed to do this. They don’t owe you anything. Some people think that they’re entitled to a copy of their personnel file. Or they demand that their termination be put into writing. While most companies will do this anyway, there isn’t really any law that says they have to. That’s because you live in an at-will state.
Do Employees Have Any Rights?
A lot of our clients ask if they have any rights at all. Connecticut employment lawyers sometimes have a hard way of explaining that workers have few rights when it comes to being fired. If you get hurt at work, you’re entitled to file for workers comp. If you get fired, you’re allowed to file for unemployment. If you didn’t do anything wrong, there’s a good chance your employer won’t challenge your claim. But if you were let go for gross misconduct (or even criminal conduct) your claim will be denied. And there’s very little chance that it will go unchallenged.
Is it Worth it for Your Connecticut Employment Lawyer to File Legal Action?
When clients contact their Connecticut employment lawyer, they want to know if they can sue. The answer is – yes, anybody can sue. But that doesn’t mean that you’ll win. And it doesn’t mean an attorney will take your case. If you don’t have a valid claim, it doesn’t make a lot of sense to file. You may be better off taking the unemployment benefits and looking for a new job. Besides, do you want to work somewhere knowing that they don’t want you there?
Call and Speak with a Skilled Connecticut Employment Lawyer Today
If you truly feel you’ve been the victim of wrongful termination, you can certainly call a skilled Connecticut employment lawyer. Call our office and set up a free consultation.