In Illinois, most employment is considered "at will". This form of employment follows the principle that either the employer or the employee may terminate the relationship at any point, for any reason. In "at will" employment, the only basic exception is that the reasons for termination must not be illegal or in violation of the law.
It is essential that you find out what type of employment your work is classified as, because employment that is not considered to be "at will" is subject to different restrictions. Arrangements for employment that are under a defined term contract are not "at will", and can only be terminated according to the clauses contained in the agreement.
What are the Illegal Grounds for Terminating At Will Employment in Illinois?
The most common illegal ground for terminating an Illinois employee is discrimination. An employer cannot terminate an employee simply for being of a particular race, nationality, religion or gender. An Ottawa employer also is prohibited from terminating at-will employees as a form of retaliation if the worker has sought an investigation into discrimination or has filed a legal claim for discrimination against the employer.
Furthermore, under the Family and Medical Leave Act, employers may not terminate employees who have taken leave for family reasons or medical treatment. Finally, employees are protected from being terminated by their employer for performing a legal obligation, exercising their legal rights, or for refusing to participate in an illegal act.
Do I Need a Illinois Attorney for My Wrongful Termination Case?
Local Ottawa, Illinois lawyers can thoroughly inform you regarding whether a wrongful termination has in fact occurred. They can also help you gather the necessary documents for your case, and can guide you through any procedures that may be unique or unfamiliar.