What is a wrongful termination or wrongful discharge in Texas employment law?
In Texas we have a very limited interpretation of wrongful termination or wrongful discharge. Texas recognizes only a handful of reasons your termination creates a wrongful discharge or wrongful termination claim. The term “wrongful termination” or “wrongful discharge” include the reasons below.
- Refusing to engage in a criminal act on behalf of the employer. In these cases, known as Sabine Pilot cases, the employer commands the employee to do something illegal, the employee refuses and then loses her job. It’s a bad idea to force employees to choose between their job and jail so employers cannot discharge employees for refusing to do something illegal. This also protects employees who contact a law enforcement agency to determine whether the employer’s request involves illegal conduct.
- Engaging in a constitutionally protected act. Employers may not discharge an employee for engaging in certain constitutional acts, such as voting, jury or military service.
- Certain whistleblower statutes prohibit discharge when an employee informs a regulatory agency of a violation of the law.
- The employer discharges the employee in violation of an employment contract.
- The employer discharges the employee in violation of an implied employment contract. An employment contract can be implied from statements or conduct by the employer that lead the employee to believe there is a promise of employment or a promise of certain employment conditions.
Wrongful termination lawyers in Fort Worth and Dallas
On a wrongful discharge claim you may receive reinstatement, back pay, future pay and other forms of relief. If your employer wrongfully discharged you should contact an employment attorney ASAP. Wrongful termination claims can be complicated in Texas. If you believe you have been wrongfully discharged then you should contact employment lawyers right away. Many wrongful termination claims have short statute of limitations periods in Texas. So it is important that you contact Texas employment lawyers immediately.