When the employer/employee relationship ends in wrongful termination, many of the employer’s obligations end. For instance, the employer no longer has to contribute to your 401k retirement plan. Some other obligations continue such as workers’ compensation, if you are receiving benefits, or permanent disability payments. A new series of legal obligations can arise, such as the possible legal responsibility of compensation or restoration if wrongful termination is proved in court. If you have been wrongfully terminated, you should contact a lawyer as soon as possible so he or she can review your case and advise you.
What type of rights cease to exist after dismissal from work?
- You have the right to continue receiving medical insurance through COBRA, although the payments you make will increase. COBRA continuation of medical insurance is available for a limited time.
- If you are receiving workers’ compensation benefits payments when you are let go, you will continue receiving them until you no longer have a right to them. In addition, if your work injury has resulted in partial or total disability, even if you are unemployed, you have a right to receive payments for life if the injury merits it.
- You have a right to any vacation money you had accumulated. If you have accumulated two or three weeks of vacation when you are dismissed, the employer has to include the vacation pay in your last paycheck.
- If you were wrongfully terminated, whether as a result of discrimination or for another reason, then you have legal cause. If you manage to your case in court, you have the right to receive damages that will put you in the same financial position you would be in if you had continued working. To accomplish this, you must not only prove financial loss due to wrongful termination by your employer but also indicate and demonstrate the specific amount of money you failed to receive. The types of legal compensation you have a right to are as follows:
- Loss of wages: this is very easy to prove since bank deposits and canceled checks are sufficient proof.
- Loss of benefits: this category includes health and dental benefits, contributions to a 401k retirement plan, company stocks when applicable, and many others.
- Emotional stress: It’s difficult to prove this aspect, which applies only in cases where the employer’s conduct was reproachable. This complaint requires confirmation by a mental health professional.
- Punitive damages: It’s very rare for these to be granted since the only objective is to punish your employer for extremely reproachable, unjust, and unacceptable behavior. This legal recourse exists to make it clear that this type of attitude will not be permitted.