Common Reasons for Wrongful Termination

In the United States, all states but Montana are considered at-will employment states. This basically means that an employer can terminate an employee with, or without justification. However, there are laws that prohibit firing due to unjust reasons, and as such, limit the “at-will” nature of employment in the US.

Here are the most common reasons of wrongful termination.


Age discrimination

Age discrimination at the workplace involves treating employees or job applicants less favorably because of their age.

Details on age discrimination, cases, settlements >>


Constructive discharge

Constructive discharge occurs when an employee resigns as a result of the employer creating a hostile work environment.

Details and examples of constructive discharge >>



Wrongful termination for having a disability, even though the employee could fulfill his/her duties, is illegal.

Details on wrongful termination due to disability >>


Employment contract

Wrongful dismissal occurs when a termination breaches one or more terms of a contract of employment.

Details on breach of employment contract cases >>



Being wrongfully terminated because of an employee’s sex is called termination due to gender discrimination.

Details on gender discrimination, settlements >>



It is not just immoral, but also illegal to terminate a woman for becoming pregnant. Pregnancy cannot be the cause of losing a job.

Details on termination due to pregnancy >>


Public policy

If an employee is fired due to exercising a legal right, or refusing to do something illegal, it is in violation of public policy.

Details on termination in violation of public policy >>


Race, color, nationality

Termination or workplace harassment due to an employee’s race, color, national origin, and also religion is illegal.

Details on race, color, nationality discrimination >>



Retaliatory discharge occurs when an employee is terminated because of reporting some wrongful conduct of the employer.

Details on wrongful termination due to retaliation >>


Sexual orientation

Being discriminated against for gender expression/identity, or sexual orientation is illegal.

Details on sexual orientation discrimination at the workplace >>



Whistleblowing is when an employee reports illegal conduct that is not related to workplace rights.

Details on whistleblowing retaliation >>