Were you Wrongfully Fired at Work? Call Us Today!
When you have been fired, you may feel many emotions. If your workplace was filled with tension, you may be relieved. However, if you liked your job and believe you may have been fired illegally, you will be hurt, angry, and ready to hold your boss accountable for their actions. Yet when deciding whether or not to pursue a wrongful termination lawsuit, many factors will determine not only if and when you pursue litigation, but also how much compensation you receive. Since not all firings are wrongful termination, speak to an employment attorney in Los Angeles from Mann & Elias to determine if you have a case against your employer.
What is Wrongful Termination?
In many cases, employees believe they have been victims of wrongful termination when in fact they have not. To be considered wrongful termination, your employer will have fired you for an illegal reason, such as your age, gender, race, religion, or other characteristics protected under civil rights legislation. Unfortunately, if you were fired due to such things as favoritism, bullying, or general personality conflicts, these reasons do not meet the criteria of wrongful termination. To learn more about whether or not your firing was wrongful termination, consult with Los Angeles unlawful termination lawyers at Mann & Elias.
Wrongful Termination Compensation
Once you have spoken to lawyers, your next area of focus will be on how much compensation you may get from your lawsuit. While of course this always varies from one case to another depending on the specific circumstances, most workers who have been victims of wrongful termination in the U.S. have successfully sued their employer and received on average between $5,000-$40,000. If you feel pursuing litigation is a viable option, work with an attorney.
Using a Lawyer for Your Case
If you believe your termination from your job was illegal, it is always recommended you hire an attorney to help you pursue your case. Though you would not need an attorney when filing an EEOC complaint, having one on your side will be beneficial in many ways, including increasing the amount of compensation you receive. In fact, surveys have shown that when using a workplace lawyer, 64% of clients received compensation through litigation. However, for those fired workers who chose to pursue action on their own, only 30% of them ultimately received financial compensation. Therefore, even if you feel you have what it takes to pursue action against your employer, work with a dedicated law firm to increase your chances of gaining the compensation you deserve.
Since most wrongful termination cases are settled out-of-court rather than inside a courtroom, having experienced lawyers can mean the difference between receiving a minimal settlement or one that will fully compensate you for your damages. On average, those workers who did receive settlements with the help of an attorney were awarded $48,000, while those who received compensation without an attorney’s help got just under $20,000. It is possible to build a much stronger case in your favor. Since your hired, legal professional has handled such cases previously, they will know how to use evidence, interview witnesses, and develop a strategy that will pressure employers and insurance companies into doing the right thing and offering a fair settlement.
What Will an Attorney Charge?
Once you hire lawyer to represent you, how much they ultimately charge to handle your case may vary. While some may work strictly on a contingency-fee basis, meaning they get no money unless you win your case, others may work on an hourly fee basis, which can quickly add up to thousands of dollars. In most cases, your attorney will likely combine these two options. According to numerous surveys, workers who hired attorneys who worked on a combination-fee basis received almost $16,000 more after paying their attorney than workers who did not refer to one.
When filing a wrongful termination lawsuit, the amount of compensation you ultimately receive may also be contingent upon the size of your employer. As you may guess, lawsuits against large companies tend to result in higher settlements than do those filed against smaller companies. As an example, if your employer had 100 or more employees and you were successful with your lawsuit, surveys show you would receive on average about $43,400 in a settlement. However, if you filed a lawsuit against an employer with less than 100 employees, that same survey showed the average settlement amount was cut in half. Since this may play a major role in whether or not you pursue litigation.
Weighing the Pros and Cons of Your Case
Ultimately, it will be up to you to weigh the pros and cons of pursuing a wrongful termination case against your employer. When meeting with legal counsel, examine such factors as the reason for your termination, whether or not sufficient evidence exists to prove wrongful termination took place, and if you lost enough wages or suffered other damages that make it financially sound to pursue a lawsuit.
Since any employer who has a wrongful termination lawsuit filed against them will of course deny the accusations, be prepared for what may be a long and complex legal fight. However, despite the obstacles that may exist, these lawsuits are often very winnable, especially for workers who have large amounts of evidence in their favor. If you are considering filing such a lawsuit, schedule a consultation today with the best law firm in Los Angeles