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Dwayne B.
Dwayne B., Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
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Experience:  Employment Law Expert
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Is it illegal or wrongful termination if i was extorted at

Resolved Question:

Is it illegal or wrongful termination if i was extorted at work? Specifically, my boss, who is also going to be my former step daughter threatened me that if I did not voluntarily pay support to her father she would not be able to afford to keep me employed. I refued. Since then she has laid me off. Would/could this be conidered wrongful termination?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Employment Law
Expert:  Dwayne B. replied 1 year ago.

JD 1992 :

Hello, and thank you for contacting Just Answer. I am an expert here and and I look forward to assisting you today.

JD 1992 :

Are you talking about alimony when you say support?

Customer:

yes

JD 1992 :

The lawyer is right in that NJ is an employment at will state which generally means that an employee can be fired at any time and for any reason other than an illegal one like race, age, gender, etc.

JD 1992 :

However, one of the other little known exceptions is if it is a "violation of public policy".

Customer:

I understand employment at will. But i can't get over that she can get away with extorting me like that? That is legal?

JD 1992 :

There are no cases on this point but I think you at least have a reasonable argument that forcing someone to do something to obtain an advantage in a lawsuit could be found by a court to be a breach of public policy.

Customer:

So what would you sugget I do? .File a claim with the EEOC?

JD 1992 :

It isn't extortion though. Extortion has a very specific definition which you can see at http://www.jfrlaw.com/criminal_statutes/2c205.htm

Customer:

What term would apply? Would you use?

JD 1992 :

The EEOC wouldn't handle this type of claim, they only handle cases where a person is discriminated against due to race, age, gender, etc.

JD 1992 :

You are going to have to hire a lawyer who does employment law to pursue it for you.

Customer:

How would you suggest that I find such a lawyer? I've already paid one attorney $150 to tell me I don't have a case. I am not working, just receiving unemployment benefits. In addition, my husband has filed a claim/petition for me to pay him support/alimony payments and court is next week. Financially it's so bad that i have to move to Florida the end of this month to stay with my sister until I can get back on my feet. The lawyer also told me to expect to pay him $50 per week in support payments. I have nothing. He , my husband, ran through my pension plans, house is in foreclosure etc

JD 1992 :

You could try legal aid but realistically they aren't likely to help. Most lawyers aren't going to be willing to take it on a % basis because it is a novel theory of law.

Customer:

So I'm out of luck aren't I.

JD 1992 :

You would have a couple of years to sue so that could give you time to save up the money to hire a lawyer.

JD 1992 :

You might also be able to use this against them in the divorce action.

Customer:

Good point.! Thank you for that....at least a ray of hope. I don't want money from it (I know you must hear that all the time lol). I honestly more want to make the point to her that she can't get away with treating people as her pawns. If i had the money I would go forward with this even if I was guarenteed no money. it'

Customer:

It's the point of the matter.

Customer:

Thank you for your insight

JD 1992 :

I understand and I do wish you the best. My gut feeling is that the courts would say that this action was illegal because it affects the integrity of the court system.

Customer:

Thank you for you well wishes. It's all good. I strongly believe in karma. I just hope I'm around to see it/ hear about it. lol.

Customer:

Have a good evening!

JD 1992 :

To you as well.

JD 1992 :

Please ask any follow up questions in this thread. When all of your questions have been answered, then I would ask that you give a Positive Rating (of course I'd suggest Excellent) since that is the only way I get credit for my work and also please consider clicking "BONUS" as a nice way of saying "thanks" for a job well done, although this is neither required nor expected. When looking at the answer I ask you to bear in mind I can’t control what the law is and whether it helps you, I can only tell you what it says, and I assume you want truthful information.


 


However, please do not issue a rating of any kind until all of your questions have been answered and please use the Reply button to ask additional questions or to provide answers to my questions.

Dwayne B., Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 26946
Experience: Employment Law Expert
Dwayne B. and 6 other Employment Law Specialists are ready to help you

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