Most employment is labeled as "at-will" in the state of West Virginia. This means that an employer or employee is free to end the work relationship at any time and leave the employment organization. The only exception to this are reasons that the law has specifically outlined as impermissible to use as a basis for employee termination.
It is important that you find out what type of employment your work is classified as, because employment that is not considered to be "at will" is subject to different restrictions. 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 provisions.
What are the Illegal Grounds for Terminating At Will Employment in West Virginia?
Discrimination is the most common illegal grounds for terminating an employee in West Virginia. Employers are not allowed to terminate an employee because of their race, religion, nationality, or gender. Employers in Beckley may also not terminate at-will employees as an act of retaliation if they have filed a legal discrimination claim or prompted an investigation into discrimination.
Further, the Family and Medical Leave act makes it illegal for employers to terminate any of their employees who have taken leave based upon family or medical needs. Finally, employers may not fire workers who exercise their legal rights, perform a legal obligation, or refuse to commit an illegal act.
Do I Need a West Virginia Attorney for My Wrongful Termination Case?
A local Beckley, West Virginia attorney can better inform you about whether a wrongful termination has occurred, and will also help in gathering the appropriate documents for your case. There may also be unique procedures that an attorney can shepherd you through.