What Is A Termination Letter?
A termination letter summarizes the details of firing an employee that the employee needs to know. In most times, employers will want to write a termination letter when they fire an employee. However, an employer must retain a copy of the termination letter for future reference. Keeping a record of the termination letter will come in handy when an employee files for unemployment, applies for another position, or files a lawsuit against the employer.
Types Of Termination
In simple, a termination letter refers to an employee’s departure from a job. Termination can be either voluntary or involuntary.
However, there two types of involuntary termination, namely:
- Dismissal: This type of involuntary termination occurs when the employee is at fault of violating company norms. Here, an employer decides to fire an employee on the basis of several wrongful acts against the company’s policies and procedures.
- Layoff: A layoff does not refer to an employee getting fired due to personal performance, but instead, a company’s economic cycle or a need to recycle itself. A layoff is basically done on business reasons such as business slowdown or economic downturn.
When Can A Termination Letter Be Used?
A termination letter can be used in instances when you forcefully let an employee resign a company, office, or job for the wrongful act committed by the person. It must be printed on company letterhead and handed over to the employee at the time of termination or mailed to the employee’s address with a signed return acknowledgement from the employee. However, an employer must also be aware about the reason as to why was he/she fired and expect the employer to provide a report with evidence.
Proof Related Documents That An Employer Must Obtain
In any case relating to termination, an employer needs to provide evidence as to why an employee was fired and on what parameters.
Hence, the employer has to retain documents relating to:
- Efforts to help employee improve; and
- Employee’s performance before and after the Performance Improvement Plan (PIP).
Usually under most circumstances, a manager or supervisor including a representative from the Human Resources Department (HRD) will hold a termination meeting with the employee. Certain companies that wish for an employee to leave with their own consent, but do not wish to fire them, may degrade the employee’s working conditions with a thought that the person will leave voluntarily.
Intentional Factors That Force An Employee To Voluntarily Resign
Some intentional factors by a company, that force an employee to voluntarily quit may be identified through different signs like:
- Moving an employee to a different geographical location.
- Assigned to work for an undesirable shift.
- Punishing him/her for things that are deliberately overlooked with other employees.
- Unfair to the employee.
Most often these tactics are done so that the employer won’t have fill up a termination letter. In addition, employees who voluntarily leave cannot collect unemployment benefits. This type of dismissal can be termed as constructive dismissal.
How Can You Claim For Wrongful Termination?
There are many labour laws that an employer can violate in situations of wrongful termination and at-will. Discrimination by an employer based on several factors like religion, race, gender, age, disability, pregnancy status etc; will amount to legal trouble. Not all wrongful termination claims are based on discrimination.
In cases where an employer terminates an employee for reporting about the company’s health and safety violations or making a harassment claim, you may have a wrongful termination claim.
Similarly, if your employer terminates you for refusing to perform an illegal act, then you may have a wrongful termination claim. Damages for wrongful termination includes, promotion, compensatory damages, reinstatement etc. However in cases of wrongful termination, it is best that both employer and employee hire a lawyer.
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