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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In an attempt to help employers get a handle on what and when to pay departing employees, here's a state-by-state summary of vacation pay requirements, as well as a chart at the end of the report that summarizes the timing of each state's final pay laws.
You’ve had it up to here. Now it’s time to fire a poor performing employee. As you’re about to do so, the employee wants to tell you something. But you tell her to “zip it.” Nothing she says will change your mind. As this case shows, you better zip it yourself and listen. Here’s why …
Q. One of my employees has created his own web site and has been posting negative comments about our company. Specifically, he has accused the company of failing to provide adequate benefits and paying below-market wages. Can we fire this worker for this conduct?
Say one of your employees tells the company doctor he’s had “homicidal feelings” and has thought about shooting his supervisor. It seems clear you could fire the employee if you have a zero-tolerance violence policy. But not so fast. As this case shows, if the employee recently filed a discrimination claim, the firing could be viewed as retaliation. Ugh!
Should you establish a zero-tolerance ban on swearing in the workplace? It’s probably not realistic and you may set yourself up for discrimination claims if you clamp down on one employee’s slip-up but not another’s. Instead, establish more general rules that say offensive language and other disrespectful conduct are not permitted, and violators will be subjected to the discipline policy.

Some employers don’t necessarily want to confront an employee directly when they suspect that he may be engaged in illegal activity. The threat of violent reprisal is very real. If you fire the employee, he may sue, alleging some form of discrimination. But if you have documented why you did what you did, chances are the lawsuit will be dismissed.

While employers have an obligation to offer reasonable accommodations to help employees who are disabled, it doesn’t follow that disabled employees can keep their jobs if they simply can’t get work done. But termination often causes a disability discrimination lawsuit. Be prepared to show exactly how poor the employee’s performance really was.

A Morris County police officer is suing the county for lost wages stemming from a restriction against firing guns during her pregnancy.

When the borough of Netcong implemented a reduction in force, 28-year employee Delores Colabella was the only employee whose position was eliminated. Colabella suspected her termination might have something to do with her age. She’s 72. Now she is suing the borough for age discrimination.

The HR office is often the place where a lawsuit can be prevented. That’s why HR pros must make sure every discharge or other adverse employment decision (demotion, pay cut, etc.) can be successfully defended. Be especially careful if you’re asked to approve a decision that comes closely on the heels of a discrimination or harassment complaint.

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