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Allen M., Esq.
Allen M., Esq., Employment Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 15472
Experience:  Employment/Labor Law Litigation
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I was wondering what kind of recourse I have for being terminated

Customer Question

I was wondering what kind of recourse I have for being terminated by a company that is being sued by the Federal Trade Commission and in the process of dissolving due to lawsuit. I have been an employee for over 2 years there and received a letter that informed us that our employment would end between October 15, and October 29th and we would receive pay for 60 days following termination. I was called into the office on October 9th and was told I had set arrangements for a customer that didn't match what I entered into the system and it was recorded, but when I asked if I could hear the recording of the call, I was told they did not have the call for me to hear. I came home and approximately 1 hour later the manager called me at home and advised me that they could setup a time for me to come in and listen to the recording, but yet I was not given that opportunity at the time of termination. I feel this company terminated me to avoid promised benefits AMG Services
Submitted: 9 months ago.
Category: Employment Law
Expert:  Allen M., Esq. replied 9 months ago.
Hello, my name is XXXXX XXXXX I look forward to assisting you today. I bring nearly 20 years of experience in various legal disciplines.

Do you have an employment contract stating that you can only be terminated for cause?

Did you have some sort of contractual guarantee for these AMG services that is only lost if you are terminated?

Do you have any suspicions that the basis for your termination is your race, religion, gender, age, disability or FMLA use?

You have mentioned the FTC investigation into the company. Did you play some role in this, as a whistle blower?
Customer: replied 9 months ago.

I was provided a letter on September 8th, 2013 that stated AMG Services is implementing a reduction in force and my position may be permanently eliminated. It said their best estimate of my layoff will occur in the time frame of Oct 15-29 and it is a part of winding down the business. However, because we so highly value our employees, we want to assure you that you will continue to be paid as usual for 60 calendar days after layoff.

Expert:  Allen M., Esq. replied 9 months ago.
Ok. You didn't answer a number of other questions that I posted. I need responses to each. Otherwise, my answer will be incomplete.

Do you have an employment contract stating that you can only be terminated for cause?

Do you have any suspicions that the basis for your termination is your race, religion, gender, age, disability or FMLA use?

You have mentioned the FTC investigation into the company. Did you play some role in this, as a whistle blower?
Customer: replied 9 months ago.


1. no


 


2. no


 


3. no

Expert:  Allen M., Esq. replied 9 months ago.
Thank you.

I'll try to explain why each of the questions was important.

First, without an employment contract, your employment is "at will." That means that the employer can legally terminate your employment with or without cause, at any time. This is true in your state and every other U.S. state except for one. So, typically, the termination would be legal unless there is an illegal motivation to behind the termination.

This is why I asked about discrimination or whether or not you were a whistle blower. I asked about the FTC issue, because you mentioned they were under investigation. I asked about discrimination, because often people don't consider this as an issue until I raise it. They think that the termination, as unfair as it seems, should be justification enough for a claim and never look deeper. Well, in an "at will" employment situation, you have to look deeper, because even an unfair termination is completely legal without some underlying illegal motivation.

Finally, on the issue of these promised AMG services, that does not create a binding contract because you did not sign any document or give up any rights in order to obtain it. Instead, it was something being offered by the employer that they could legally retract any time. So, there is no way to claim that the employer was illegally trying to avoid giving you the AMG services when they actually had no obligation to do so even if they kept you on. Such a promise is called an illusory promise in the contracts and employment law world, because there is no way to make it binding.

Regrettably, on the facts that you've given here, your only real recourse is to file for unemployment and, if they attempt to block that, fight the issue before the unemployment court.

I do wish that I could tell you differently here, but in an "at will" employment situation the employer has great discretion in when and how they terminate people.
Allen M., Esq., Employment Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 15472
Experience: Employment/Labor Law Litigation
Allen M., Esq. and 9 other Employment Law Specialists are ready to help you

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