What Can I Do if I’ve Been Wrongfully Terminated in Corpus?
In the eyes of the law, it seems obvious that no employee should be required to carry out illegal acts demanded of them by their employer. However, in Corpus Christi as well as Texas, this was not explicitly against the law until the Sabine Pilot v. Hauck case that occured in 1985. In the case, an employee was fired for refusing to illegally pump bilge water into the ocean. Since this case, it has become a part of business and employment law that employees cannot be fired for refusing to participate in unlawful activities.
If you were demanded to commit a criminal act in the workplace by your employer and were fired, you are a victim of wrongful termination. Being fired can be a dizzying and troublesome experience, which is where Corpus wrongful termination attorneys can help. If you’re wondering what you can do if you’ve been wrongfully terminated in Corpus Christi, continue reading, or feel free to contact our helpful team at Carabin Shaw today.How Texas Employment Law Works
Many states across the U.S. are formally recognized as at-will employment states, meaning that employees can be fired for essentially any reason at any time without warning unless a prior written agreement states otherwise. Texas is no exception. States apply varying levels of limitations to this standard of employment, and Texas has very few limitations, the most notable being Sabine Pilot.
This exception, however, is a limited one, and the court places the burden of proof on the employee, who has to show their sole reason for being fired was their refusal to commit an illegal act, and that act must be subject to criminal penalties to qualify. The complexity of this law makes it important to seek the counsel of an experienced attorney to begin an employment lawsuit. If you’ve been wrongfully terminated in Corpus, Carabin Shaw can guide you through the following steps of what you can do.Your Next Steps
- Report your case to human resources - after being wrongfully terminated in Corpus, your first step should be to report your situation to human resources. Sometimes the issue can be resolved internally, which is the quickest and easiest way to put a close on your case. Most of the time though, you’ll end up needing to take further actions.
- File a claim with the EEOC - The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) is your next best bet to resolve your wrongful termination case, and they must be contacted within 45 days of the incident. Before contacting them, be sure to collect evidence: pay stubs, witness testimonials, firing and hiring forms--essentially, any documents that can help your case. After 30 days, if they haven’t closed the case, you must file a formal complaint, then they will conduct a further investigation. If you don’t get the results you want, you need to contact our Corpus employment lawyers to file a civil lawsuit.
- File a civil lawsuit - The last step is to file an employment lawsuit. Be prepared to share all your gathered evidence with your attorney. In a Sabine Pilot claim, you will be suing for damages, such as lost wages, attorney fees, and lost benefits. Additionally, awards for punitive damages and emotional distress can be awarded, but it is a rare win. If you have any questions about what you can do if you’ve been wrongfully terminated in Corpus, be sure to contact Carabin Shaw.
Wrongful termination is, by definition, wrong. No one in Corpus Christi should be subjected to firing for refusing to commit an illegal act. If you or a loved one has found yourself in this unjust scenario, you need a lawyer on your side that you can depend on. Carabin Shaw knows that a wrongful termination can be stressful and challenging, so our lawyers are here to do everything in our power to make the legal experience as comfortable as possible.
With over 200 years of combined experience and countless wins to our name, our Corpus employment lawyers stand ready to hear your case with a free consultation and make sure the scales of justice weigh in your favor. Call Carabin Shaw today at 800-862-1260.
The Carabin Shaw Offices in Corpus Christi are located two blocks south of the Nueces County Courthouse in Corpus Christi, Texas.
Our Corpus Christi telephones are answered 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Call 361.444.1111.