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ScottyMacEsq
ScottyMacEsq, Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 11294
Experience:  Licensed Texas General Practice Attorney
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Is there a time limit on filing a suit against a former employer

Customer Question

Is there a time limit on filing a suit against a former employer who released all but one of its rep's? This event took place in 2005.
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Employment Law
Expert:  ScottyMacEsq replied 3 years ago.

ScottyMacEsq :

Thank you for using JustAnswer. I am researching your issue and will respond shortly.

ScottyMacEsq :

What would the lawsuit be based on? Is this a breach of contract situation?

ScottyMacEsq :

And what state did this occur in?

Customer :

not a breach of contract, employer released all but one independant rep's

Customer :

factory is in Kansas rep's were from all over the USA

ScottyMacEsq :

Thank you. What would you allege in your lawsuit?

Customer :

A filing against this employer was filed in New Hampshire in 2005 by three East coast reps and won for a settlement of over 75K with a undisclosed amount. If its not to late I would like to file on my behalf.

ScottyMacEsq :

What was the basis of the complaint? Basically, if you file a lawsuit, you have to have a reason. I can't just file a lawsuit against my neighbor because someone else did and won. I need to have a basis for my complaint.

Customer :

all but one of the rep's were release and after a new emplyer promised to keep everyone working

Customer :

Is it possible to send you a report on this action?

ScottyMacEsq :

Unfortunately, no, we can't receive email messages, etc... outside of the JustAnswer system. If I knew initially what their case was based on (promissory estoppel, breach of contract, employment discrimination) I could tell you if you are within the applicable statute of limitation.

Customer :

Again, what would the time frame be for a new suit?

Customer :

employment discrimination would be close

Customer :

this case was filed in April of 2008 not 2005

ScottyMacEsq :

Well, discrimination claims that deal with age, sex, gender, etc... fall under Title VII, and have to be filed within 180 or 300 days of the date of the discrimination (depending on state law). But it's clearly outside of 300 days, so I doubt that is what they claimed.

ScottyMacEsq :

Was there any contract in place?

ScottyMacEsq :

Basically, depending on the type of suit, the statute of limitations can change. Like I said, if it is discrimination, that's up to 300 days. Breach of contract can be 3-8 years, depending on the state that you live in and are working in.

ScottyMacEsq :

Libel and slander can be a year.

ScottyMacEsq :

Personal injury, 2 years.

ScottyMacEsq :

The point is, without knowing the basis for the suit, I cannot tell you what the time frame is. It's like seeing the question 1+a=b, and trying to solve for "b". If you don't know "a", you can't solve for b.

ScottyMacEsq :

Once I know "a", I can tell you "b".

Customer :

I don't think we are on the same page and I don't know just what to ask at this time. Sorry I am not going any further today

ScottyMacEsq :

I understand. Just to be clear, you're asking me a question about how long you have to file a lawsuit, or whether you still can. This is a statute of limitations issue. But there are different statutes of limitations for different causes of action. So it is crucial to know what you're suing based upon. You can't sue a former employer just because he laid you off. Employment is at-will in the U.S. Now if he breached a contract when he laid you off, you can sue for breach of contract. If he laid you off because you're too old, that's an age discrimination case. If he laid you off because you took time off for protected medical reasons, that is a medical leave case. All of these are different causes of action, and have different statutes of limitation. And so depending on what you are complaining about (a lawsuit is a legal complaint), the answer that you are seeking would change.

ScottyMacEsq :

Like that math equation I showed you earlier, you have given me 1+a=b, and asking me about "b". I am asking what "a" is first, because otherwise "b" can pretty much be anything, but there is only one real answer here. I could give you every possible value of "b", but only one of them would be correct. So without knowing "a" (your basis for a lawsuit) I can't give you "b" (how much time you have to file).

ScottyMacEsq :

Please note that I would very much enjoy answering your question, but I do need to know more information about your situation. I would need to know what these other employees sued for, what their complaint was, where they were located at the time they were terminated, etc... to tell you if you have a similar right.

Customer :

I thank, you but this is not hepful today. I need to do more before I do this again.

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