The majority of employment relationships in Rhode Island fall into the category of "at-will" employment. This type of setup means that either employer or the employee is free to end the employment at any time they desire. The only exception to "at-will" employment is that the employment may not be terminated in a manner that violates the law.
Employment arrangements that do not qualify as "at will" are not subject to the same limitations and restrictions, so it is crucial that you know how your work setup is classified. Typically, if your employment arrangement was for a set term, it is not "at will", and the employment can only be terminated according to procedure contained in the contract.
What are the Illegal Grounds for Terminating At Will Employment in Rhode Island?
In a Rhode Island 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. A Johnston 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.
Furthermore, the Family and Medical leave act prohibits employers from firing employees for having taken leave for family or medical reasons. Lastly, employees are protected from being fired 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 Rhode Island Attorney for My Wrongful Termination Case?
Local Johnston, Rhode Island lawyers can properly inform you regarding whether a wrongful termination has in fact occurred. They can also help you gather the necessary documents for your case, and can guide you through any procedures that may be unique or unfamiliar.