Here’s a bit of advice that may save you from a messy and needless lawsuit: When terminating an employee, never meet one-on-one. Instead, make sure at least two company representatives are present at all times.
Plus, warn everyone against speaking with the employee after the discharge unless someone else is present.
The reason? If you meet alone, you give the employee an opportunity to put words in your mouth—words that may end up as evidence against you in court.
Recent case: Laura Makowski worked in a law firm’s marketing department. She became pregnant, and announced she would take maternity leave beginning at the end of the year and running into early spring. She went onshortly before giving birth.
About that time, the firm’scommittee held a retreat to make plans for the new year—including how to cut a job in the marketing department. The firm concluded Makowski would be the one to go.
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