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 not falling in the "at will" category is subject to different limitations and requirements, so you should be sure to know the classification of your work setup. In general, employment that is subject to a set period employment contract is not considered to be "at will", and termination may only happen in accordance with procedures outlined in the contract.
What are the Illegal Grounds for Terminating At Will Employment in Pennsylvania?
Discrimination is the most common unlawful grounds for terminating an employee in Pennsylvania. Employers are not allowed to terminate an employee because of their race, religion, nationality, or gender. 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 Northampton County employer.
Furthermore, under the Family and Medical Leave Act, employers may not terminate employees who have taken leave for family reasons or medical treatment. Finally, employees are protected from being terminated by their employer for performing a legal obligation, exercising their legal rights, or for refusing to participate in an illegal act.
Do I Need a Pennsylvania Attorney for My Wrongful Termination Case?
A local Northampton County, Pennsylvania 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.