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Employee fired after registering complaint is now suing? You could be personally liable

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in Discrimination and Harassment,Employment Law,Firing,HR Management,Human Resources,Leaders & Managers,Management Training

Here’s a new worry for Ohio HR pros who play a role in deciding whether to fire employees: You could end up being sued personally if it turns out that the discharge was wrongful under Ohio’s public policy exception to at-will employment.

That means your own assets—not just the company’s—are at risk.

Here’s how it works: In Ohio, employees generally are employed at will, meaning that—unless there’s an employment contract or other legal protection, such as under federal anti-discrimination laws—employees and employers alike are free to end the employment relationship anytime they choose.

However, the Ohio Supreme Court has ruled “an employer may not terminate an employee for a reason that is contrary to the clear public policy of this state.”

But what’s “an employer”? Ohio courts have interpreted the term to include management employees who act on behalf of their employers and recommend or participate in the dec...(register to read more)

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