Most employment in Massachusetts considered to be "at-will". This means that either the employer or employee can terminate the employment at any particular moment, and for any reason. The only general exception in "at-will" employment arrangements is that the termination may not be done for reasons which violate the law.
It is critical 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. Work arrangements that are based on an employment contract are often not "at will", and so they cannot be terminated except according to the contract procedures.
What are the Illegal Grounds for Terminating At Will Employment in Massachusetts?
The most common illegal ground for terminating a Massachusetts employee is discrimination. An employer cannot terminate an employee simply for being of a certain race, nationality, religion or gender. Boston employers are further barred from firing at-will employees in order to retaliate against them for filing a legal discrimination claim or initiating an investigation of discrimination.
Moreover, the Family and Medical Leave act makes it illegal for employers to terminate any of their employees who have taken leave based upon family or medical needs. Lastly, employers are prevented from terminating an employee because they have exercised a legal right, performed a legal obligation, or have refused to do something that is illegal.
Do I Need a Massachusetts Attorney for My Wrongful Termination Case?
A local Boston, Massachusetts attorney can better inform you about whether a wrongful termination has occurred, and will also help in collecting the appropriate documents for your case. There may also be unique procedures that an attorney can shepherd you through.