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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HR Law 101: There are two important reasons you need to protect your company’s trade secrets: (1) You make it less likely that confidential information will be misappropriated. (2) It will be easier for you to seek relief in court if your secrets are stolen ...  

         

What should you do when an employee keeps spouting offensive racial slurs despite repeated warnings to stop? Fire her before she says or does something that leads to a lawsuit.

Q. We just updated our policy manual and are asking employees to sign a standard acknowledgment of receipt form. If an employee refuses to sign it, is that grounds for termination? Or should we just document that they refused to sign? 

Some lawsuits seem to drag on forever, especially when an em­­ployee’s lawyers endlessly demand access to company documents. Settling those cases for a modest sum may be the best approach if l­itigation is taking over and HR is so busy responding to discovery requests it can’t get other work done.
Employees are protected from retaliation for complaining about alleged discrimination. The complaint is considered protected activity. Something as simple as calling a supervisor to complain about a co-worker’s racial slur is protected.
Former employees have deadlines for filing complaints over their termination or other employment discrimination claims. In most cases, they have to act within 300 days. Missing the deadline means they ­forever lose the right to sue.

Some employees will never be happy and seem to do everything possible to interfere with a normal, well-functioning workplace. When that’s the case, don’t hesi­­tate to terminate the disruptive worker. Just make sure you document her shortcomings.

Support any adverse job action, such as a demotion or termination, with solid business reasons. Clearly and contemporaneously document your decision to act. That way, you can come to court prepared to explain exactly why you did what you did and when you did it.
As a general rule, you should only discuss a worker’s termination with those who really need to know about it. That’s especially true in sensitive cases involving alleged fraud, theft or falsifications. You don’t want to lose a defamation case because a manager decided to make an example of a fired employee.
You can reasonably expect em­­ployees to cooperate with internal investigations so you can get all the facts and make well-informed decisions. You can and should discipline workers who won’t assist.
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