The majority of employment relationships in South Carolina 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 "at-will" employment is that the employment can not be terminated in a manner that breaks the law.
Employment arrangements that do not qualify as "at will" are not subject to the same limitations and restrictions, so it is critical that you know how your work setup is classified. 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 South Carolina?
The most common illegal ground for terminating a South Carolina employee is discrimination. An employer cannot terminate an employee simply for being of a specific race, nationality, religion or gender. An employer in Richland County also cannot fire at-will employees in retaliation for the employee filing a claim for discrimination or initiating an investigation of discrimination against the employer.
Additionally, under the Family and Medical Leave Act, employers may not terminate employees who have taken leave for family reasons or medical treatment. Lastly, employers are prevented from terminating 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 South Carolina Attorney for My Wrongful Termination Case?
A local Richland County, South Carolina 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.