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Does your boss have to warn you before firing you?

| Sep 17, 2021 | Employment Law

You think you’re doing everything that is being asked of you at work, and you have no fear of losing your job. Even so, your boss approaches you one Friday and says that you’re being terminated, so you shouldn’t bother coming in on Monday. It’s time to start looking for a new job. 

You feel shocked at first, and that gradually turns into frustration. No one warned you or gave you any indication that you may be fired. You have no idea what you did wrong, and you would have been happy to adjust your behavior if someone had simply asked you to do it. It feels unfair, and you start thinking that it may be illegal to fire you without warning. 

Contracts and at-will employment 

Whether this is true or not may depend on what type of employee you are. Most employees work under at-will employment laws, which actually make it legal to fire a worker at any time, without reason, and with or without warning. If that was your position, your employer did not do anything wrong. 

On the other hand, if you had an employment contract, it may have protected you by stating that you did need advance notice. The company could also have a policy stating that they’ll always give notice, even if you don’t have a contract. In these situations, your rights may have been violated and what happened might be a wrongful termination. 

As you can see, it’s critical to know the specific details of your case, as they can make all of the difference. If you have been fired illegally, there are steps you can take.