Employment in the state of North Carolina is mostly considered to be "at-will" employment. "At will" means that for any reason, both the employer or the worker may end the work relationship at any point. The only exception to this are reasons that the law has particularly outlined as impermissible to use as a basis for employee termination.
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. 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 North Carolina?
Regarding terminating a North Carolina employee, discrimination is the most common illegal reason. An employer may not fire an employee just because they are of a certain race, religion, gender, or nationality. An employer in Charlotte also cannot fire at-will employees in retaliation for the employee filing a claim for discrimination or seeking an investigation of discrimination against the employer.
Furthermore, according to the Family and Medical leave, employers are prohibited from firing employees who take leave for family or medical purposes. Finally, employers cannot terminate employees who are simply exercising a legal right, performing an obligation under law, or refusing to do an illegal act.
Do I Need a North Carolina Attorney for My Wrongful Termination Case?
A local Charlotte, North Carolina 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.