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What are my rights when I am fired?

Being an employee in the United States entitles you to certain rights, even after you have been terminated from a position. Despite the fact that most jobs throughout the country fall under the category of "at-will," there are still some elements of employment that an employee can expect, depending on the circumstances under which he or she was terminated.

Each employment situation may operate differently from another similar situation, so it is important for every employee to understand the relevant details of his or her employment contract or agreement. For instance, one employer may offer a severance package, whereas another may not. If you believe that you have been let go without being properly compensated, then an experienced attorney can help you examine your employment agreement and the circumstances of your termination to determine if a violation has occurred.

Under the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1986, an employee and that employee's family has the right to continue health insurance coverage after being terminated. In general, any company that employs more than 20 individuals must offer some form of health insurance. If you were not offered health coverage when you believe you should have been, or if you were denied ongoing health insurance coverage following a termination, you may be eligible to bring a lawsuit against your former employer.

There are a number of other rights that an employee can exercise when he or she is let go from a position, but the way each of those may play out is dependent on the individual factors in your case. If you believe you were not treated fairly in an employment termination, do not hesitate to seek the counsel of an experienced attorney who can help you explore your options while ensuring that your rights remain protected.

Source: Findlaw, "Employee Rights after a Job Termination," accessed Jan. 04, 2017

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