For some of us, we cannot wait to give our employers that two-week notice. But that moment may not play out the way that we envision it. When you give your employer your two-week notice, you rarely expect them to fire you immediately. That can be considered illegal. Or can it? When you have questions, you should speak to a wrongful termination lawyer from Minnis & Smallets as soon as possible.
Sometimes, an employer can fire you after you give them your two-week notice. It depends on your employment relationship. Many workers are employed at will. That means the employer can fire them at any time, whether they have a reason or not. As long as the reason is not illegal (i.e., based on a protected class or action), it is typically legal. However, some employment contracts come with protections that prevent employers from firing their employees after giving notice.
You might wonder why your employer would fire you if you already gave notice of your departure. There are different reasons. Your employer might want to stop paying you if they know you are leaving. They might want to hire a replacement immediately, and do not want to pay you both during that two weeks. In other situations, an employer might simply be offended that you are quitting, or the employment relationship has soured so much that your employer is ready to end it immediately instead of waiting.
One of the main reasons why employers will not fire people after they give notice is unemployment. If you quit your job voluntarily, you are not eligible for unemployment benefits. However, if your employer turns around and terminates you, you might qualify for unemployment. This is because your employer fired you when you were able and willing to continue working for a period of time.
There are some instances when such firing could be wrongful termination. For example, if you are leaving your job because the workplace is hostile due to harassment, and you inform your employer of this reason, your termination could be unlawful retaliation. Further, if your employer has a discriminatory reason for terminating you immediately, you can take action for wrongful termination. If you have an employment contract that requires you to give notice and work two weeks before leaving, your employer may breach the contract by firing you.
If you are experiencing harassment or discrimination at work, it might be better to quit without giving notice. However, always discuss your situation with a legal professional first.
If you believe you were wrongfully terminated after giving your company notice, you should speak with an experienced attorney immediately. Wrongful termination is a serious violation of employment law that should not be ignored even if you are not returning to the company. Contact the office of Minnis & Smallets today to schedule an initial consultation with a member of our team.
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