Laid Off or Fired? Here Are 6 Things an Employment Lawyer Can Do for You

Employers don’t always follow the law when firing employees, so you may be eligible for much more than your company gives you. Speak with an employment lawyer to learn how to protect your legal rights.

What rights do you have in Florida if you’ve been fired or laid off?

You may be eligible for proper notice of your dismissal if you’re laid off or terminated. 

An assessment of reasonable notice is dependent on several variables, such as but not limited to the following:

  • the duration of your job/work
  • the tenure of your position
  • the salary
  • the accessibility of similar jobs

The minimum standards specified in the Employment Standards Act are often easily surpassed by common law before notification. Depending on your work agreement and severance package, a Florida employment law attorney can tell you if you are eligible for reasonable notice.

Layoff or Termination?

Employers (and attorneys) refer to any job loss for a business purpose, such as an absence from work, as a “layoff”. 

A reduction-in-force (RIF) eliminates one or more positions to save money. 

Additionally, employers use words like “retrenchments” and “restructuring” to describe layoffs.

A layoff is generally considered impartial because any employee in the job intended for removal would have also lost their job. The business’s financial situation and future goals, not a specific employee’s competence, lead to a layoff.

6 ways a reputed attorney may help you if laid off or terminated wrongly

An employment attorney will seek to protect your entitlements and rights when you are fired or laid off to get the best compensation payout feasible given your circumstances and the most recent legal requirements. The employment attorneys can help you in several areas, including determining the levity of a claim against an employee and the need for just cause to fire an employee. 

1. Evaluate your severance package

When you’re laid off or fired, your company may try to save money by paying you a meager severance payout. An attorney can advise you if your severance payment is appropriate, considering your specific circumstances and the law.

2. Assess your allegations of violations of human rights or bad faith

It is unlawful for a company to terminate you in a harsh, dishonest, or unfairly dealing manner. If they have indulged in such misconduct, your employer may be responsible for paying you damages. If you have a case for these damages, a lawyer can analyze your employer’s actions.

3. Verify your categorization

Some businesses purposefully misclassify employees as “independent contractors” in an effort to reduce their liabilities when they lay off or dismiss workers. 

Independent contractors have fewer entitlements than regular, full-time workers. Employers engage in this practice to avoid providing their workers paid vacation, mandatory holiday pay, and health and dental benefits. An employment attorney can determine whether to uphold your rights if you are correctly classified.

4. Defend a counterclaim

Employers sued by a former employee for wrongful termination damages may respond with counterclaims. Individual employees are frequently sued for the first time, and the process can be quite stressful. An employment attorney can help you determine whether your employer’s claims are valid and can offer a defense.

5. Negotiate with your employer about a deal

In Florida, negotiations are the norm rather than trials. Because of the risk, price, and delay involved in a matter’s trial, a good lawyer will be able to evaluate your case and counsel you on whether the offer from the employer is reasonable and fair.

6. Go all the way to trial in a matter

An employment lawyer would be prepared to take your case to trial to get a verdict if you and your company cannot come to terms with settling your claim. An experienced attorney will also be able to contest a decision if required.

Over to you

If you have been fired or laid off, employment lawyers may help you get the most out of your severance pay and ensure that your employer respects your legal rights and obligations.