Nobody wants to hear the words “you’re fired” or “we’re letting you go.” 

So, what can you do once you’ve received those not-so-magic words, and the termination makes no sense?  Or maybe you feel like something unlawful is behind the termination? 

Here are some things an employment lawyer will want to consider when evaluating your situation to determine whether you may have legal claims against your former employer.


“Why” were you fired?

    •  What reason did the company provide to you? Did they give you anything in writing?
      • Is there any evidence to support that reason – even if you disagree with it?  (write-ups, complaints, performance evaluations, verbal coaching/warnings, emails, etc.)
      • Is there any evidence to contradict that reason?
    • Did anything happen shortly before your termination?
      • New supervisor?
      • Did you take any leave time (medical, FMLA, military, time off to attend a court proceeding, etc.)?
      • Did you disclose a medical condition or ask for accommodations due to a disability?
      • Did you complain about discrimination or a hostile work environment or other unlawful conduct occurring at work?


    • Were you let go as part of a layoff?
      • If so, who else did the company terminate and who did it retain? 

Did the company offer you severance pay?

    • Does the company have a written policy or common practice for paying severance?
      • Example: some companies have a “formula” – such as a certain amount per year of service (1 week per year, 2 weeks per year, etc.)
    • Is your severance pay conditioned on you signing an agreement that waives any legal claims you may have against the employer?


If you applied for unemployment, what happened?

    • What information did you provide to the unemployment office?
    • What information did the company provide to the unemployment office?
    • Did you receive unemployment benefits when you initially applied for them? What was the reason for the grant or denial?
    • Was there an appeal by you or the company?

Did the company replace you?

    • Is the replacement equally or more qualified for the position than you?
    • Did the company hire your replacement before your termination?
    • Is there anything that makes you question why your replacement got the job? 

Does the company owe you any money?

    • Did you get your final paycheck?
    • Did the employer properly classy your position as exempt/non-exempt for purposes of your ability to get overtime pay?
    • Did you receive all commissions, bonuses, and/or other pay to which you were entitled?
    • Did your employer lower your pay rate retroactively during your employment or after you were terminated? (i.e., they told you your pay would be less after you performed the work)
    • Did the company reimburse you for any outstanding work-related expenses?
    • Did the company have a policy providing for payout of unused vacation time, paid time off, and/or sick time? Did you get what was due to you?

If You Need An Analysis of A Potential Termination

Please Submit a Consultation Request 

This web site (including links, blogs or other content) is provided for informational purposes only and is not to be considered as legal advice.  Any interaction through this web site, including but not limited to any comments or the submission of a consultation request, does not create an expressed or implied attorney-client relationship. 

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