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 time. The only exception to this are reasons that the law has specifically outlined as impermissible to use as a basis for employee termination.
It is important 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. If an employment contract specifying a time for employment is involved for your work arrangements, then employment is not "at will", and termination can only be done following the terms of the contract.
What are the Illegal Grounds for Terminating At Will Employment in North Carolina?
The most common illegal ground for terminating a North Carolina employee is discrimination. An employer cannot terminate an employee simply for being of a specific race, nationality, religion or gender. A Cumberland County employer also is prohibited from terminating at-will employees as a method of retaliation if the worker has sought an investigation into discrimination or has filed a legal claim for discrimination against the employer.
Moreover, according to the Family and Medical leave, employers are prohibited from firing employees who take leave for family or medical purposes. Lastly, employers cannot fire 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?
In Cumberland County, North Carolina, a lawyer will be able to notify you about whether you are a victim of wrongful termination, and they will be able to guide you in collecting the necessary documents. Sometimes there can be procedures that are unique, and a lawyer can guide you in these as well.