Experienced Wrongful Termination Lawyers in Florida/
At the Feldman Legal Group, our Florida wrongful termination attorneys aggressively represent employees for a broad spectrum of claims under the umbrella term of wrongful termination. We depend on powerful state and federal laws that protect employees from discrimination, retaliation, harassment — and being fired illegally.
Whether a termination is actionable at law depends upon the underlying facts and reasons for the termination. If you have been fired, our employment law attorneys can first investigate the facts to determine whether a cause of action exists. If you were truly wrongfully terminated, we are here to help you take legal action.
When you come to us for assistance, you can expect us to listen to your side of the story regarding your case and give you an honest assessment of your situation. We will then inform you of how we can reach the best possible outcome in your case.
Our attorneys are passionate about seeking justice for people who have been subject to illegal actions by their employers. We can help you collect evidence by advising you on what’s needed to make a solid case, review the employer’s policies and procedures to make sure they have held up the end of the employment bargain, and if you have an employment contract, we will go over it thoroughly to make sure they were compliant. Speak with a Florida wrongful termination attorney so that we can help you explore your legal options.
Tips from Our Florida Wrongful Termination Lawyers/
It is important to understand the potential causes and what options you have after you get fired.
What Can Cause an Employer to Wrongfully Terminate Someone? /
There are many reasons, including prejudice/bias and greed. Some employers are woefully ignorant of the law, while others simply believe they can get away with wrongful termination. Many employers do succeed with breaking employment laws, especially when workers are not informed about their workplace rights.
What Should I Do If I Was Wrongfully Terminated in Florida?/
If you believe you were fired illegally, the best thing to do is take advantage of a free consultation with an experienced employment lawyer. At the Feldman Legal Group, our attorneys can often quickly determine whether you may have a valid wrongful termination case and give you an idea of the approximate value of the case.
COMPENSATION FOR WRONGFUL TERMINATION
Once our wrongful termination attorneys in Florida are able to examine the factors that led to your termination, we can determine what damages you are entitled to receive. Generally speaking, compensation for wrongful termination can include the following:
If your employer is also guilty of wage and hour violations, you should be able to collect the back wages that are owed to you. Florida law allows you to collect penalties in addition to your earned wages, effectively doubling your potential legal award.
Damages for wrongful termination often include loss of the income you depend upon to meet daily expenses. Lost wages are calculated from the date of termination until the present and can include lost benefits such as health insurance or stock options.
If your case goes to trial and you prevail, you can be awarded coverage of your attorney’s fees. Attorneys’ fees are typically awarded whenever an employer is determined to be guilty of violating the law at the employee’s expense.
A company that unlawfully terminates you may be ordered to compensate you for wages you will miss in the future. You can receive compensation for reduced wages if you are unable to find a job that pays as well as the one you lost.
Although rare, some wrongful termination cases will include punitive damages. These are meant to punish the employer for particularly egregious acts and to compensate the employee for emotional distress suffered because of the experience.
In some cases, a fired worker must relocate in order to obtain affordable housing or accept a new position. If this applies to you, termination-related moving expenses can be included in your compensation award.
What Can I Get in Compensation from a Wrongful Termination Lawsuit?/
The amount we can win for you if we represent you in a wrongful termination case varies. Rewards depend on how long you were out of work because of the termination, your earnings at the time, whether there are punitive damages in the offering and other factors. Awards can be as high as six-figures or more if there has been an award of punitive damages. However, you should temper your expectations regarding a monetary amount. We will fight hard to get you what you deserve, what is just in your case.
What Can I Get if I Decide to Settle a Wrongful Termination Case?/
We understand that you may prefer a quick resolution to your case and are prepared to be tough-minded negotiators to get just compensation in your case. If we agree that a settlement is the best course of action, we will negotiate from a position of strength having built a strong case to support your claim. Moreover, in cases where there has been truly egregious acts on the part of the person responsible for your wrongful termination, the employer may be eager to reach a settlement.
Often settlement amounts are unknown because the settlement agreement contains a requirement that the parties not discuss the specifics of the settlement. However, some information is public and we know that employers have had to pay out six-figures in compensation for illegal acts to the victims.
Tampa Wrongful Termination Lawyer Available to Help You/
WHAT IS WRONGFUL TERMINATION?/
Our wrongful termination lawyers in Florida can help you explore your legal options. Contact our law offices to obtain a case assessment by one of our attorneys.
Federal law protects employees from discrimination based upon race, religion, ethnicity, national origin, age (over 40), disability, or gender. (Sexual harassment falls under the umbrella of gender and is legally considered to be a form of discrimination). If you are in a protected class and are terminated for this reason, or discrimination is behind the excuse given for your firing, this constitutes wrongful termination.
Florida and the Federal Civil Rights Act also make it unlawful to retaliate or terminate an employee for filing a claim of discrimination or sexual harassment in the workplace. Many employees recover damages under a whistleblower claim. This may occur if you report, object to, or refuse to participate in discriminatory conduct, retaliation, or harassment and then are terminated or demoted because of this. You are also protected as a whistleblower if you report illegal wage violations or infractions of federal Occupational Safety and Health laws.
Employees also suffer unlawful termination because of a disability or health condition. For example, your boss may decide your announced pregnancy is inconvenient and find an excuse to let you go. Or, your employer may fail to provide you with a job after you exercise your right to paternity leave under the Family Medical Leave Act.
Were You Illegally Fired?/
UNLAWFUL TERMINATION IN FLORIDA/
Like many other U.S. states, Florida’s employment laws follow an “at-will” rule. This means that unless you have a written employment contract that says otherwise, your boss is allowed to let you go without cause. At the same time, however, Florida employers with 15 or more workers are bound by federal and state laws that prohibit unlawful termination under protected circumstances.
In addition to the above-mentioned discrimination laws, Florida makes it illegal to discriminate based upon HIV/AIDS status and other health conditions. Also, in Florida, you cannot be fired because you make a legitimate workers’ compensation claim or take leave to participate in jury duty or military service.
COLLECT EVIDENCE OF WRONGFUL TERMINATION/
An employee who feels he or she is in danger of wrongful termination should begin to collect evidence of events leading up to the firing. This might include text, email and/or voicemail messages, annual review paperwork, witness contact information, employee handbook, and a written timeline of events as they occur. You may not have a “smoking gun” of evidence where the employer lays out in explicit detail that they will fire you for unlawful reasons. However, courts will consider a collection of circumstantial evidence that may lead to a decision in your favor. Contrary to popular belief, cases can turn on circumstantial evidence, especially in cases involving unlawful discrimination or harassment.
Statistics about Unlawful Terminations/
If you experience wrongful termination, you are certainly not alone. The EEOC compiles statistics for lawsuits filed for discrimination and retaliation, many of which include wrongful termination as a cause of legal action. These statistics show that In 2017 alone, there were 6,858 total charges of wrongful termination in the state of Florida, and over 83,500 nationwide.
If you were fired or experienced retaliation upon filing a claim of sexual harassment or discrimination, your employer violated both the Federal Civil Rights Act and Florida law. Additionally, if you refused to participate in discriminatory conduct, retaliation or to ignore reported harassment and were then retaliated against by being fired or demoted, you can recover damages under the whistleblower theory.
You can also be forced to quit and still sue your former employer for the unlawful act. This is called “constructive discharge.” Under Florida law, this happens if the conditions of your employment is such that a reasonable employee in your position would feel they had no choice but to quit. Circumstances could include a situation where your employer allowed illegal harassment to occur without addressing it, or made working conditions so unsafe that you had to leave the job. The Florida Supreme Court has said this is when “an employee involuntarily resigns in order to escape intolerable and illegal employment requirements.” Actions that can cause a constructive discharge are the same as those for a wrongful termination.
At times, wrongful termination cases can be resolved through negotiation or mediation, but it takes a skilled lawyer to get to the underlying facts. If negotiation fails to achieve the result you deserve, our lawyers are always prepared to represent you in court.
Our lawyers for wrongful termination cases at the Feldman Legal Group can help you determine whether you have been fired in violation of Florida law. We have years of experience in the field and a strong grasp of case law. Once we are apprised of the facts of your situation, we can help you decide whether to move forward with a legal action. Our priority is making certain that our clients receive justice, we are passionate about this, something we hope to reflect when you speak with us about your case. Call 877-946-8293 to discuss how we can help.
WHAT OUR CLIENTS SAY
WRONGFUL TERMINATION - CLIENT REVIEW
Could You Have Been Legally Let Go?/
Legitimate Reasons for Termination /
An employer in an “at will” employment state (such as Florida) has many legitimate reasons to dismiss an employee without notice. These include: unexcused absence or tardiness, insubordination, missed deadlines, poor quality of work, negative attitude, and more. As long as the business is not violating laws protecting employees from discrimination or retaliation, an employer is essentially free to replace you at will.
Employee Contracts /
If a written (or in some cases, verbal) employment contract exists between a business and hired worker, both can be legally held to the terms of the contract. So then, if an employer has guaranteed you a job for a designated period, sudden dismissal may be a breach of contract and wrongful termination.
Employer Policies /
If an employer has an employee handbook or written human resources manual, the described policies should be applied to all employees equally. If an employee is treated differently regarding discipline or dismissal, the employer’s handbook or typical HR procedures can provide evidence of wrongful termination.
If two employees who essentially perform the same duties are treated differently at work, this differential treatment may be in violation of employment laws. An example is when employees over the age of 40 are “laid off” while younger workers are kept on; this may be discrimination-based differential treatment and, thus, wrongful termination.
How Can an Employer Defend Against My Wrongful Termination Lawsuit?/
There are legitimate reasons for firing an employee, but even if it appears clear that you were wrongfully terminated, the employer may still offer a defense for their conduct. For example, the employer may allege that you were not fired because of a retaliation, but because your tardiness violated workplace policy. If you allege they made it impossible to continue working there because of a hostile work environment, they may argue that they followed workplace policy regarding discriminatory conduct to the letter and did all they could to prevent the conduct.
Remember that these laws may not apply to businesses with a small amount of employees. There may still be ways to help you get justice if you were in fact wrongfully discharged. If your claim involves whether you were paid less because of your gender, Florida law still protects you from discrimination, so if you were discharged in retaliation for complaining about such conduct, you may be able to file a legal action.
A Florida wrongful termination attorney with the decades of experience our attorneys have in these cases will be useful to you in helping overcome any of the employer’s defenses. We know what defenses employers often present in these cases and can build a strong case if you have suffered a wrongful termination. Employers will hire an attorney to fight against you and may argue your claim is frivolous. Our attorneys will fight back.
WORK WITH EXPERIENCED WRONGFUL TERMINATION LAWYERS IN FLORIDA/
If you are the victim of wrongful termination, don’t hesitate to take steps to protect your rights. Qualified legal help can make the difference to your case outcome and your future. At the Feldman Legal Group, our success record includes six-figure results for clients who were fired illegally. We have law offices in Tampa.
At times, wrongful termination cases can be resolved through negotiation or mediation, but it takes a skilled lawyer to get to the underlying facts. Many, if not most, employment law cases are settled without going to trial. If negotiation fails to achieve the result you deserve, our lawyers are always fully prepared to represent you in court.
If you are in the Tampa area and believe you have been fired in violation of the law, contact us at the Feldman Legal Group. We are keenly aware of the stress being let go can cause, and when you’ve been fired unfairly, it can be worse. Bills can pile up while you struggle to get answers. We can help get you back on your feet. Call us at 877-946-8293.