If you suspect that your employer has acted illegally, you may have the grounds for a wrongful termination lawsuit.
To be successful, you’ll need to assemble relevant documents, grievance processes, harassment notes, work review records, screening processes, and anything else you can think of that seems associated with your story and your case. You’ll also need to find an attorney.
What are wrongful termination laws in PA?
Pennsylvania is an at-will employment state, which means that — unless you are working under a contract or other agreement — you can be fired for any reason, with or without cause.
However, both Pennsylvania and federal law says that employers can’t fire you for any of the following reasons, characteristics, or circumstances:
- Family status
- Age, if over 40
- For complaining about or reporting the employer’s illegal activity (Whistleblower Protection)
- If the employee has a GED instead of a high school diploma
Do I have a wrongful termination case?
One of the challenges in making a wrongful termination claim is that all too often, there is little, if any, documentation. What’s essential to understand is that your written record counts too. For example, whenever you see or hear about your manager’s inappropriate or illegal behavior, make a note of it. Record the date, time, and circumstances. Include the name of anyone else in the vicinity who witnessed the behaviour.
Can I ask to see my personnel file and get copies of the documents?
Your Philadelphia attorney will find many items useful for review, including your original job application, your resume, correspondence related to your job application, any performance work reviews, an official job description. A list of other employees who may have experienced similar treatment, and records, text messages, emails related to the end of your employment is also useful.
How do I find a wrongful termination lawyer?
Hiring a Philadelphia lawyer to help you make a wrongful termination claim is an important decision. Start by asking people you know for a referral — including family members, friends, and colleagues. They may know someone — or know someone who knows someone. Follow up by check these referrals out online.
Look for expertise in handling cases like yours. Look for cases, settlements, and client reviews. Find a couple you like and ask for a meeting. Most lawyers and law firms offer a free consultation.
At this consultation, ask yourself if you are comfortable with the person, and if you feel safe speaking openly and honestly. A good lawyer is personable, persuasive, and able to read you. Having the ability to read you tells you that the attorney can also read others, gauge a juror’s reactions to testimony, and the honesty of witnesses. These are excellent skills to have in a courtroom setting.
What should I look for in an employment attorney?
• Detail Orientation: Details are important in all legal matters. Details make or break a case. The strength of an attorney lies in his or her ability to find small details that the other side does not. • Communication and Presentation Skill. Good lawyers are thorough, organized, and don’t make typos. Good litigation lawyers think well on their feet. Can you picture him/her in a courtroom? • Accessibility and Working Together. Find out who you will be working with other than the attorney and make sure you understand the roles of other people who may be involved in your case. You don’t ever want to feel ignored if you have questions. Find out a secondary contact to answer questions if your attorney is not available.
How long after termination can I file a lawsuit?
According to Pennsylvania law, you have two years from the date of termination to file a wrongful termination lawsuit. However, there are special situations where other limitations and deadlines may apply.
Do you feel you were wrongfully terminated? The Law Offices of Joel J. Kofsky, are ready to meet with you to learn more about your case. Do not hesitate to contact our offices at (215) 735-4800 to schedule your free initial consultation.