Employment in the state of New York 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. Basically, the only limitation or exception in an "at will" employment is that the termination must not conflict with the law.
Employment not falling in the "at will" category is subject to different limitations and requirements, so you should be sure to learn the classification of your work setup. 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 New York?
In a New York at-will employment, discrimination is the most common illegal ground for terminating an employee. Termination by an employer cannot be done on the basis of race, nationality, gender, or religion. An employer also may not fire an at-will employee in retaliation for the employee starting an investigation into discrimination or filing a legal claim of discrimination against the Watertown employer.
Additionally, according to the Family and Medical leave, employers are prohibited from firing employees who take leave for family or medical purposes. Finally, employers are prevented from firing 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 New York Attorney for My Wrongful Termination Case?
A local Watertown, New York attorney can better inform you about whether a wrongful termination has occurred, and will also help in gathering the appropriate documents for your case. There may also be unique procedures that an attorney can shepherd you through.