Most employment is labeled as "at-will" in the state of Washington. This means that an employer or employee is free to end the work relationship at any point and leave the employment organization. The only exception to this are reasons that the law has particularly outlined as impermissible to use as a basis for employee termination.
Employment arrangements that do not qualify as "at will" are not subject to the same limitations and restrictions, so it is essential that you know how your work setup is classified. Arrangements for employment that are under a defined term contract are not "at will", and can only be terminated according to the clauses contained in the agreement.
What are the Illegal Grounds for Terminating At Will Employment in Washington?
In a Washington at-will employment, discrimination is the most common unlawful ground for terminating an employee. Termination by an employer cannot be done on the basis of race, nationality, gender, or religion. A Seatac employer also is prohibited from terminating at-will employees as a form of retaliation if the worker has sought an investigation into discrimination or has filed a legal claim for discrimination against the 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, 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 Washington Attorney for My Wrongful Termination Case?
Local Seatac, Washington lawyers can thoroughly 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.