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How can I Avoid Legal Issues When Firing Employees?

Philadelphia Business Lawyers

An employer cannot terminate a worker for unjust reasons. That type of termination is unlawful, and some examples of wrongful termination include:

  • Whistleblowing.
  • Complaints about violations of employee rights.
  • Testifying against the company or another employee in legal suits.
  • Participating in lawful union activities.
  • Filing claims for Workers’ Compensation or charges of unfair labor practices.
  • Wage garnishments in order to pay debts.

Employers cannot fire an employee in a manner that violates federal or state laws. As an employer, understanding both state and federal laws regarding employee termination will help you avoid a wrongful termination suit. Anyone in your company who is in a position to make termination decisions should have an idea of state and federal laws so they can avoid firing someone in an unjust manner.

For example you cannot fire an employee through retaliation, and you cannot violate state and federal discrimination laws, employment agreements, and you must be in accordance with the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA).

When can I Fire an Employee?

You can fire an employee for numerous reasons, and some of the most common include:

  • Incompetence
  • Repeated unexcused absences or tardiness
  • Sexual harassment
  • Verbal abuse
  • Physical violence
  • Falsification of records
  • Theft

It is important to note that an employer has the right to fire an employee for any legal reason. At-will employment laws differ from state to state, however, the laws are usually similar.

Keep Employee Performance Documents

Running a business involves many decisions, and those include hiring and firing employees. Often, these decisions are made due to performance issues, and a great way to minimize legal issues is to document how that employee performs.

Documentation should provide detailed information of incidents and any employee write-ups for disciplinary issues. Also, customer complaints and time cards can help give you the credence that you need when it comes to justifiably firing an employee.

Philadelphia Business Lawyers at Sidkoff, Pincus & Green P.C. Advocate for Employers Fending Off a Wrongful Termination Suit

When you own a company, the prospect that you will one day have a disgruntled employee is high. In this case, you will need our skilled Philadelphia business lawyers at Sidkoff, Pincus & Green P.C. to help you build a case. Call us at 215-574-0600 or contact us online for an initial consultation. Located in Philadelphia, we serve clients throughout Pennsylvania and New Jersey.