An employment termination can be one of the most challenging and traumatic experiences in an individual’s life. The trauma of an employment termination is made worse when the employer acted illegally by firing an employee in violation of the employee’s civil rights, workplace rights, or in violation of an employment agreement.
However, it is important for Michigan employees to understand that they have rights and protections under the employment law that may prohibit their employer’s adverse employment actions. Furthermore, illegally terminated employees can recover significant damages and other remedies for their employer’s wrongful discharge.
What constitutes an illegal termination?
Wrongful discharge cases can result from a number of situations including, but not limited to:
- Age Discrimination.
- Sex Discrimination.
- Sexual Orientation Discrimination.
- Sexual Harassment.
- Pregnancy Discrimination.
- Disability Discrimination.
- Race Discrimination.
- Religious Discrimination.
- Height and Weight Discrimination.
- National Origin Discrimination.
- Color Discrimination.
- Illegal Retaliation.
- Violations of the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA).
- Violations of the Michigan Whistleblowers’ Protection Act (WPA)
- Violations of the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act (USERRA)
- Breach of Employment Contract.
- Wage and Hour Violations.
- Fair Labor Standards Act Violations.
- Wrongful Discharge in Violation of Michigan Public Policy.
What damages can an employee recover to remedy an illegal firing?
A wrongfully terminated employee may have several remedies available, depending on the employer’s violation including, but not limited to:
- Recovery of lost wages.
- Recovery of lost benefits.
- Reinstatement into the employee’s position.
- Liquidated damages.
- Punitive damages.
- Compensatory damages.
- Mental and emotional distress damages.
- Contractual damages.
- Attorney fees and costs.
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