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Fired Unfairly? When You Can Sue for Wrongful Termination in 2024?

You can sue for wrongful termination when you believe your firing violates the law or breaches your employment contract. Common reasons for wrongful termination lawsuits include discrimination, retaliation, violation of an employment agreement, and constructive discharge.
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C.L. Mike Schmidt Published by C.L. Mike Schmidt
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How Long Do I Have to File a Wrongful Termination Lawsuit?

According to Eldessouky Law, if an employee believes they were wrongfully terminated, they generally have a limited time frame to file a lawsuit, typically ranging from 2-3 years from the date of termination, depending on the type of claim [1].

Different types of wrongful termination claims have different statutes of limitations:

  • Breach of Contract: 2 years
  • Violation of Public Policy: 2 years
  • California Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA): 3 years
  • California Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act (WARN Act): 3 years
  • Whistleblowing Protections: 3 years

It’s important to act promptly if you believe you have a case, as waiting too long to file a lawsuit can make it more challenging to prove your claim. Once the statute of limitations expires, you may lose the right to sue.

What to do After a Wrongful Termination

According to the Azadian, employees who suspect they have been wrongfully terminated can take proactive measures to defend their rights [2]. They include:

  • Documenting the circumstances surrounding their dismissal. Collecting any evidence that indicates they were terminated unlawfully, such as emails, text messages, or other correspondence with their employer, witness testimonies, etc.
  • Seeking advice from a wrongful termination attorney to understand their legal options and potential next steps.

Workers can also take steps to guard against being victims of wrongful termination in the first place. Along with understanding their legal rights and protections, they should document any workplace misconduct or discrimination and report any violations to their employer or a government agency.

What are the Odds of Winning a Wrongful Termination Lawsuit?

To prevail in a wrongful termination lawsuit, you must demonstrate that your dismissal was unlawful. Common unlawful reasons for termination include discrimination, harassment, and breach of contract by your employer.

The likelihood of receiving a substantial award is significantly higher when you enlist the help of a wrongful termination lawyer. Even if you don’t secure the maximum possible compensation, pursuing legal action can still result in a larger recovery than simply filing a claim on your own. Claimants who have legal representation typically receive larger settlements than those who handle their cases independently.

Wrongful termination cases are regularly settled outside of court. Employers are often willing to settle to avoid a trial. A labor or employment lawyer can help you determine if settling outside of court maximizes what you could receive in recovery.

Also Read: Steps to Get Your Job Back After Being Wrongfully Terminated

Wrongful Termination Win Rates

Of all successful wrongful termination lawsuits, approximately nine out of ten compensation awards are the result of a settlement agreement.

To put these statistics in perspective, consider 100 wrongfully terminated employees who each retain an attorney and file a wrongful termination claim. According to current win rates, 64 of these employees would likely receive compensation. And for as many as 57 of those successful cases, the compensation would come from a settlement.

These figures suggest that for every nine settlements, one case proceeds to trial. At trial, the case has roughly a 10% to 20% chance of succeeding and resulting in compensation for the worker. However, the majority of cases that go to trial do not yield a favorable verdict for the injured worker.

Several factors contribute to this outcome, including the unpredictability of judges and juries, as well as the requirement for the worker to prove their case by a preponderance of the evidence. Hiring a skilled attorney can significantly increase your chances of success in winning your case.

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The Litigation Group at Schmidt & Clark, LLP is an experienced team of trial lawyers that focuses on the representation of plaintiffs in lawsuits. We are handling individual litigation nationwide and are currently accepting new legal challenges in all 50 states.

If you or a loved one was involved with these matters, you should contact our law firm immediately for a free case evaluation. You may be entitled to a settlement by filing a suit and we can help.

References:

1. https://eldessoukylaw.com/how-do-you-prove-wrongful-termination/
2. https://azadianlawgroup.com/blog/how-common-is-wrongful-termination/

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