How Do You Prove Wrongful Termination In New Jersey?
While New Jersey is an at-will state, meaning employers can fire employees without warning, it is not lawful to terminate someone for an illegal reason. These include discrimination against race, gender, religion, and age, as well as harassment and retaliation. If you believe your employer has committed wrongful termination, you can file a claim.
However, you need to prepare evidence to support your claim. The process is not going to be easy. So, here are essential tips that will help prove wrongful termination in New Jersey.
Understand Federal and State Law about Wrongful Termination
Before moving forward with filing a wrongful termination claim, it pays to read up on what the law says. Remember that every state has different rules. In New Jersey, employers cannot discriminate against employees because of their class characteristics. It is unlawful for employers to retaliate against an employee after reporting illegal activity or exercising their protected rights, such as compensation benefits and time off.
Gather Evidence to Prove the Termination is Done Under False Pretenses
The burden of proof is on the one who filed the claim. The evidence that you need to build a solid claim will depend on the reason you were fired. For example, if the employer said you were discharged due to poor performance, you can use previous performance reviews and ratings to refute the employer’s story. If it’s because of absenteeism, look at your past records of attendance and leave of absence. If fired because of alleged sexual harassment against you, get a statement from the involved person that says no harassment happened.
Gather Evidence to Prove the Termination Was Against the Law
After uncovering the real reason for termination, you also need to show that the employer committed a violation. This is where the legal services of a lawyer are beneficial. Depending on the nature of the claim, the lawyer may ask you to present documentation like statements from supervisors, work emails, or letters of complaint that you submitted in the past. In some cases, you may also need to contact witnesses and get their testimonies about the events that led up to your termination.
Hire an Experienced Wrongful Termination Lawyer
Having a competent lawyer on your side can increase your chances of proving a wrongful termination claim. An experienced employment lawyer is knowledgeable about the rules and nuances of federal and state law. They can interpret complex laws so that you can understand your rights and see your situation from a legal perspective. They can assist you with everything from gathering evidence and filing a case, to preparing your testimony.
When hiring an attorney, always ask about credentials. Be sure to choose someone with an extensive academic background and experience handling cases similar to yours.