In New Jersey, a wrongfully terminated employee has certain legal rights. A plaintiff in such a lawsuit must prove that the employer fired them in violation of an employment contract, or with malice and/or recklessness. The termination cannot be because of age, sex, race, religion, or disability status. The employee can also sue if they were subject to discrimination and their reasons for firing are not legitimate.
If you were wrongfully terminated, it is wise to seek the assistance of an employment lawyer in New Jersey to protect your rights. An employment lawyer can help you determine if you have a wrongful termination lawsuit and can file the appropriate document with the court on your behalf.
The following are common grounds for wrongful termination in New Jersey.
It is unlawful for an employer to fire an employee because of the employee’s race, ethnicity, age, gender, sexual orientation, or disability. If you were fired from your job because of any of these reasons, you have grounds for a wrongful termination lawsuit. You can also sue if the employer retaliated against you for filing a workers’ compensation claim, or if you were fired for refusing to do something illegal.
- Breach of contract
This includes an employer that terminates an employee before their contract is up or one that fires an employee based on a verbal agreement in which the employer did not live up to its promise. If your employer fired you because of a reduction in the workforce, it may be a breach of contract and grounds for a wrongful termination lawsuit.
- Retaliation for exercising your rights
If you were fired because you filed a workers’ compensation claim or filed a charge of discrimination against your employer, you have grounds for a wrongful termination lawsuit. Likewise, if your employer retaliated against you by firing you for speaking out against illegal work practices.
Your employer can’t fire you for engaging in certain activities, like becoming a whistleblower and reporting your employer’s illegal activities, or refusing an illegal task your boss asked you to complete. There are also federal laws that prohibit employers from firing workers for serving during armed conflict, exercising their stock options, or for filing complaints about their working conditions.
- Taking lawfully protected job leave
Employees have the right to take time off without fear of losing their job. New Jersey State Law protects this right. The employer must seek your consent in writing before any layoffs are made. If you did not give consent, you can take legal action against your employer and the claims will be processed under state law.