Firing

There’s danger in every aspect of firing, from WARN Act layoffs and exit interviews to constructive discharge and more.

Learn how to fire an employee and sidestep wrongful termination lawsuits, with battle-tested firing procedures, and employment termination letters. At last, you can fire at will!

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Ordinarily, civil servants have qualified immunity for actions arising from their official duties as government workers. But punishing a subordinate for testifying in a civil rights lawsuit clearly destroys that immunity.
A former Houston Chronicle reporter has filed a sex discrimination complaint against the newspaper claiming she was illegally fired for failing to inform her bosses that she was moonlighting—as a stripper.
If you automatically discharge everyone who can’t return to work after exhausting all available leave, chances are a court won’t second-guess those terminations.

Reasonable employers always fare better in court than unreasonable ones. That’s one reason to keep care­­ful disciplinary records showing every­thing you did to help an employee perform well despite obvious problems. If he’s ultimately terminated, the court probably won’t second-guess the decision.

No matter the bad behavior of supervisors, always be ready to prove to a court that you execute your duties without any hint of bias. Doing so may save HR professionals like you from personal liability.

Some employees believe that any physical problems that linger after surgery or other medical treatment are disabilities that entitle them to ADA protection. That’s not true. Disabilities are permanent. Temporary, post-surgical problems don’t qualify.

It’s perfectly legitimate to prohibit recreational travel during any approved, paid sick leave. If you also happen to substitute paid sick leave for unpaid FMLA leave, you can still enforce the same no-vacations policy.

If all an employee does is tell you about the diagnosis of her medical condition, that’s not enough to trigger her FMLA rights. For example, the employee can’t just state that she’s been diagnosed with depression and then, the next time she misses work, expect the time off to be automatically considered FMLA leave.

Here’s a valuable tip when discharging an employee: Don’t make promises you can’t keep. It can lead to years of needless ­litigation and cost thousands of dollars in legal fees even if you win in the end.

Make sure before you fire someone that she’s been paid everything she is owed. And if the employee has complained about pay irregularities, be sure to investigate right away.
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