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Allen M., Esq.
Allen M., Esq., Employment Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 19319
Experience:  Employment/Labor Law Litigation
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I was terminated from my position as Distribution

Customer Question

I was terminated from my position as Distribution Center/Production General Manager without any warning or reason. I was provided a severance package in exchange for not seeking a suit or filing any claim. I accepted as I was in need of income and medical insurance. However, the payments have stopped. I have eight weeks remaining according to the agreement. Is this a breach of contract and can I now file suit?
JA: Because employment law varies from place to place, can you tell me what state this is in?
Customer: My place of employment was South Carolina but the agreement states North Carolina law prevails as the corporate office is in North Carolina.
JA: Have you talked to a lawyer yet?
Customer: No.
JA: Anything else you think the lawyer should know?
Customer: Yes, I have discovered that my position has been filled by a friend of the director over my position. That there are three other managers/supervisors whose performance was below par but was provided opportunities to correct those short-comings. One of them use to be the general manager, my position, but was demoted and allowed to keep his pay. I was terminated on the spot. All are White and I am a Black male.
JA: OK. Got it. I'm sending you to a secure page on JustAnswer so you can place the $5 fully-refundable deposit now. While you're filling out that form, I'll tell the Employment Lawyer about your situation and then connect you two.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Employment Law
Expert:  Allen M., Esq. replied 1 year ago.

Thank you for trusting your question to JA today. I am a licensed attorney with over a decade of law practice and over 20 years of experience in the legal field. I’m happy to be of assistance.

You can file suit, but not for the things that you waived in the agreement. Instead, you have to file suit based on breach of that contract itself. You can essentially sue for the unpaid portion of the separation agreement. You could also ask the court to invalidate the entire agreement, based on this breach, but you'd then have to pay back everything you received.

I certainly understand the issue with being replaced by someone a different race than yourself (and the same as the others), but you also mentioned they are friends. Hiring a friend over others isn't illegal in employment law. It's cronyism, but that's just word with negative connotations. It's not a word describing an illegal act. So, to sue, you'll be running up against that fact. If the employer here can demonstrate that the plan was simply to hire a friend, then the person's race isn't really legally relevant.

If you have any further questions, please let me know. I invite follow up questions, so use REPLY for those. If you have no further questions then good luck going forward and please do not forget to rate my service with a top-three rating so that I receive credit for working with you today. Please rate me based on my service and not on your satisfaction with the law, which I am not in control of and I am just reporting to you. Also, feel free to request me in the future, if you have questions concerning a different matter.

Expert:  Allen M., Esq. replied 1 year ago.

Hello, I wanted to check in and make sure that there was not any additional information that you required after the response I previously provided to you. If you need further assistance, please use REPLY and ask me for any additional information you may need. If not, take care and have a great day.