The majority of employment relationships in Pennsylvania fall into the category of "at-will" employment. This form of setup means that either employer or the employee is free to end the employment at any time they desire. The only exception to this are reasons that the law has particularly outlined as impermissible to use as a basis for employee termination.
Employment that does not fall into the category of "at will" is not subject to the same restrictions. Thus, it is essential that you identify what type of employment arrangement you are involved in. 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 Pennsylvania?
In the state of Pennsylvania, employee discrimination is the most common illegal ground for termination in an at-will employment. Employers are barred from terminating their employees on the basis of race, gender, religion, or nationality. An employer in Bethlehem also cannot fire at-will employees in retaliation for the employee filing a claim for discrimination or prompting an investigation of discrimination against the employer.
Furthermore, employers are prohibited by the Family and Medical Leave act from firing those employees who take leave in order to address family or medical concerns. Finally, an employer may not terminate an employee for refusing to do something illegal, for exercising a legal right, or performing a legal obligation.
Do I Need a Pennsylvania Attorney for My Wrongful Termination Case?
Attorneys in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania may be able to inform you as to whether a wrongful termination has occurred, and can assist you in gathering the required documents for your case. There may also be unique or unfamiliar procedures, and an attorney can guide you through these as well.