Covid 19 isn’t being fair to anyone. As much as it has hurt employers across the United States, it is hurting workers worse. There are a number of things happening that may lead a person to need an employment attorney.
While employers do have the right to fire people and the right to lay off people, there are some employers who may take advantage of the current crisis. It helps to have some idea of the laws that govern our lives. Otherwise, we may think we have no recourse when, in fact, our employer can be held accountable for unethical, illegal actions.
Here are seven possible reasons for unfair termination that can be tied right back to COVID 19 and the economic crisis. The smartest move if you think you are fired unfairly is to seek a specialist in employment law.
1. You work for a very large company. They lay off people without notice. Then they terminate those jobs without notice. It’s highly likely that your company has violated the laws governing the closure of a business with 500 or more employees.
Large companies know the law, and they know they cannot close their doors without providing adequate notice to their employees. If a lawyer can prove that the company broke the law when they fired you and your coworkers, all of you may be entitled to some compensation.
2. Perhaps you work for a company who got a loan from the government to keep everyone on the payroll, but you got laid off or terminated. This is a direct violation of the promise that the company made when it agreed to take the loan.
This is a new area of law, but an attorney could make a compelling case that you deserve back pay and other restitution. A lawsuit could force the business to pay loan penalties, and this may be enough to bring them to the negotiating table with you.
3. A chronic illness puts you at risk of dying from COVID. This is documented by your doctor. You ask to take leave. They terminate your employment. A situation like this may fall under the Americans with Disabilities Act.
4. You become sick with Covid or another major illness. You are absent from work longer than your medical leave will allow. Your employer uses this as an excuse to terminate your position. There’s a good chance that your termination was illegal. An attorney may be able to identify statutes that were violated.
5. Your employer doesn’t enforce the simple rules that are needed to prevent COVID. They don’t ask people to wear masks. Perhaps they are even hostile to you when you do wear a mask. They don’t increase their cleaning protocols or establish safe workspaces that are six feet apart. If you get very sick from COVID, you may have grounds to sue them for negligence.
6. You work at a difficult job where there are many safety protocols required by state and federal law. Your employer starts taking shortcuts with fewer people on the job, less emphasis on worker protections, and other acts of negligence. If you get hurt, you may deserve more than workers compensation. You may end up suing them for negligence under the law.
7. Normally you are protected from discrimination on the basis of gender, race, disability or religion. However, during COVID, your employer throws the rulebook out the window. You get harassed, demoted or fired due to this new lax attitude. You may be able to sue over these unfair practices.
No one wants to live in a world where everyone files a lawsuit over nothing. However, these situations are all unfair. Workers do have rights, even in a national crisis. It’s important to remember that and to fight for fairness if your rights have been trampled on.