Employees who need time off for childbirth but who aren’t eligible for FMLA leave aren’t entitled to additional protection under Ohio law. You can terminate the employee if your leave policies don’t provide another way to take time off. But if the former employee is ready to return after childbirth, beware rejecting her if she tries to reapply for an open position.
There’s danger in every aspect of firing, from WARN Act layoffs and exit interviews to constructive discharge and more.
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When terminating several employees at the same time, make sure you have carefully documented the reasons. That’s especially important if the employees share common protected characteristics such as age. You want to be prepared for a lawsuit if they decide the real reason they lost their jobs was their protected characteristic.
When an employee complains about perceived discrimination, how you treat the worker can greatly affect the outcome if the case reaches court. The best approach: Handle the case professionally, at the HR function level.
Occasionally, you’ll run across an employee who has a hard time performing up to expectations and won’t accept suggestions to improve. If he belongs to a protected class, you may worry about a lawsuit if you terminate him. That shouldn’t be a problem if you take the time to document problems before termination.
The EEOC has filed suit against Medical Specialties Inc., alleging it discriminated against Evelyn Lockhart because of her religion. She is a member of a Christian denomination whose practitioners are forbidden to work on certain days.