wrongful-termination-grievance-letter

What exactly is a wrongful termination grievance letter? It is an official document, a letter addressed to your ex-employer, informing them that you do not agree with the termination of your employment.

If you believe you’ve been fired for an unlawful reason (such as discrimination, breach of contract, whistleblowing, etc.), you may have grounds for a wrongful termination case.

The first step is usually to file a letter of grievance with your ex-employer. This letter may also be referred to as letter of dispute, appeal, or complaint.

The letter may be written by you personally or an attorney, but it is usually best to consult with an attorney (or a union delegate if you are a union member) before filing the letter, to find out if you have a valid case and what to expect. Most employment attorneys offer free first time consultations.

Free wrongful termination grievance letter examples

Below, you will find a few free samples of grievance letters you can use to create a letter of your own and send your ex-employer. Feel free to copy and paste them, just make sure to fill them out with your information. All fields that need changing are CAPITALIZED, and all notes to be deleted from the letter are in (parenthesis).

Letter 1

Dear XY (ADDRESS TO THE HIGHEST LEVEL OF MANAGEMENT YOU HAVE ACCESS TO)

I am writing this letter to lodge a formal grievance regarding my discharge on DATE.

The provisions of my work contract state that i have to receive at least 2 official notices of infractions prior to getting discharged. However, I found myself terminated without having obtained any infraction notices whatsoever. A copy of my contract has been attached.

On DATE after arriving at the company’s main office at ADDRESS in the morning, I was asked by my supervisor, NAME, to immediately go to his office. I entered his office to receive my letter of immediate termination.

I have been working at EMPLOYER for the past LENGTH OF EMPLOYMENT, during which time I have not been given an unfavorable performance review, nor have I had any irreconcilable disagreements with any of my supervisors or colleagues. Please find copies of my last 4 performance reviews, dating back X YEARS.

The sudden termination of my employment status constitutes a breach of my employment contract. I am requesting an official hearing between my supervisor and his manager, to find out

I respectfully request a reply to my grievance letter by MONTH 1st. I will be compelled to think about alternative legal solutions, should I not receive a written reply by that time.

Sincerely yours,
Signature
Printed name

Attachments:

  • employment contract
  • 4 performance reviews
  • letter of termination
Letter 2

Dear HR MANAGER,

This letter is to raise a formal grievance concerning the termination of my employment status on DATE.

My new supervisor at the ADDRESS branch of our company, who has been my boss for X WEEKS, gave me notice of immediate discharge in the afternoon hours, after calling me into a meeting with the HR representative at the branch. I was not given a formal reason for my termination.

I believe my termination to be wrongful, because of the following:

  • I have been working at COMPANY NAME for X YEARS, and I have never received a warning letter or negative performance reviews
  • I am 4 months pregnant, and have related complications, which require me to get weekly checkups by my obstetrician. I informed my previous supervisor of this, and he acknowledged it.
  • The checkup requires me to take one afternoon off per week. I make up for the lost hours the rest of the week.
  • My new supervisor has questioned whether I really need those checkups, or I just want “to get an afternoon off every week”. This remark leads me to believe that I was terminated because of my pregnancy, which is unlawful according to the Americans With Disabilities Act. The weekly checkups are a requirement posed by my obstetrician, and as such, is considered a temporary disability.

Please review the reason for my dismissal, and reply to me in 30 days. I can be reached at PHONE NUMBER or at EMAIL ADDRESS. I will need to seek legal counsel, if I do not receive a reply by that time.

Sincerely,
Signature
Printed Name

Attachments:

  • letter of termination
  • doctor’s note on required checkups
  • last 3 performance evaluation reports

Elements of a grievance letter

Your unique case might not fit any of the samples from above, so it’s important to know the most important things you need to include in an official wrongful discharge grievance letter.

Below, you will find a guide on how to write a grievance letter for wrongful termination. There are several important things you will want to take into consideration when wording your letter of complaint to your former employer, so it is advisable to touch on all of the subjects listed below in your grievance letter.

1. ADDRESSING THE LETTER

As with all letters, make sure the header includes:

  • Return address (your name and contact information)
  • Date of the letter
  • Inside address (name and address of the person the letter is being sent to)
  • Salutation

The person you would normally address the letter to is either the HR department, a supervisor, or the person who fired you.

2. SUMMARY OF THE CIRCUMSTANCES OF YOUR TERMINATION

The first section of the letter should provide details on when and how you were terminated. Make sure to include:

  • The date you were terminated
  • The name of the person who fired you, and how it happened
  • The reasons you were given for the termination

3. DETAILS OF YOUR DISPUTE

This should be the longest section of your letter. It should detail the reasons you believe your termination to be unlawful, such as:

  • Employment contract or company policy provisions relating to terminations
  • Incidents which lead you to believe your termination was unlawful
  • Documents you possess to prove your position

4. ASKING FOR A REPLY

In the last section of the letter, you will want to explicitly ask for a reply within a reasonable amount of time.

  • Asking for a reply within 30 days is reasonable
  • Be polite, do not make threats, but state that if you do not receive a reply, you will seek counsel to be advised on what further steps you may consider taking

When determining the number of days in which you would like a reply, remember to factor in the filing deadlines the EEOC, or other relevant employee protection government bodies impose.

5. CLOSING

At the end of your letter, you’ll want to include the normal elements of an official letter:

  • Closing salutation (“Sincerely” always works)
  • Space for your signature
  • Your name printed
  • List of attachments you are including with the letter