Employees wrongfully terminated from jobs may be dealing with negative financial and professional consequences that affect their livelihood. Workers wrongfully fired from jobs typically desire compensation for the employer’s illegal action. Employees wrongfully terminated should research the valid reasons for dismissal to learn if they can successfully take legal action. A wrongful dismissal can lead an employee to seek reversal of the firing or compensation for time out of work.
Recently fired employee may question, “What is wrongful termination?” so they can decide if they have the right to legal action. Wrongful termination in South Dakota occurs when an employer fires an employee illegally, usually for discriminatory or retaliatory reasons. Workers wrongfully fired in SD will be responsible for following the appropriate procedures to file a claim and seek reparations from the previous employer.
To learn what to do after experiencing an unlawful termination, review the following sections:
- Types of illegal termination in South Dakota
- Types of legal termination in South Dakota
- At-will employment exceptions in South Dakota
- File a discrimination charge with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission in South Dakota
- File a lawsuit against your employer in South Dakota
South Dakota Unemployment Resources
Types of Illegal Termination in South Dakota
Learning about the types of unlawful terminations from employment in SD is important for fired employees who are considering pursuing legal action. If an employer used one of the types of illegal dismissal of employment, the terminated worker has a valid claim to make against them. Some types of illegal firing may include discrimination against an employee’s age, religion, gender, veteran status, disability or nationality. These types of illegal terminations in South Dakota are discriminatory and violate a federal law enforced to protect employees.
Types of unlawful terminations may also include harboring malicious or ill intent for employees and firing them out of retaliation. Retaliation terminations may be due to the employee having an open sexual harassment case or simply complaining about discriminatory practices. If an employer commits any of these types of illegal termination of employment, the dismissed worker has a cause of action to pursue rightful compensation by filing a claim.
Types of Legal Termination in South Dakota
Several types of legal dismissal of employment still affect an employee negatively, but are not against the law. If employers use legal reasons for terminating employees in South Dakota, such as layoffs or the closing of the company, they have not violated state or federal laws. Other types of legal firing occur when an employee exhibits poor performance on the job or the worker’s contract has ended.
While these types of legal termination in South Dakota may be unexpected and problematic for employees, they are lawful and ethical. When a former employer claims these types of legal termination of employment, the dismissed worker does not have grounds to file a claim. The reason behind the termination is typically the ‘cause for action’ required to file a claim, which is why it is important for terminated employees to identify the difference between legal and wrongful dismissals.
At-Will Employment Exceptions in South Dakota
Exceptions to at-will employment are accompaniments to the at-will employment law that protect employees from unlawful firings. What is employment at will? The at-will employment law affirms that the working relationship between an employee and employer is available for termination by either party at any time for any legal reason.
Is South Dakota an at will state? South Dakota practices the at-will employment law. However, the at will employment exceptions in South Dakota include:
- The implied-contract exception (forbidding the firing of an employee when an implied contract is in place, even if there is no binding document)
- The public-policy exception (preventing employers from terminating employees if a public policy is violated in the firing process)
The only exceptions to at will employment not observed in South Dakota is the covenant of good faith and fair dealing exception, which enforces the fair and ethical treatment of employees by their employers.
File a Discrimination Charge With the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission in South Dakota
The process for how to file a charge of employment discrimination starts with submitting a claim to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) within 180 days of the suspected illegal firing. When you file a wrongful termination discrimination charge in SD, you can mail in the claim, report it by phone or visit the Minneapolis district office in person. After filing a charge of discrimination in South Dakota, the EEOC will notify you within 10 days with a decision on whether they will investigate the claim or closed it due to invalidity.
When navigating through the process for how to file an EEOC employment discrimination charge, the EEOC may first decide to enroll you and your employer in a mediation program for a quick settlement. This process only takes an average of three months to complete, if successful. If a conclusion is not possible through mediation, the agency may try a voluntary settlement with your former employer.
After you file a wrongful termination discrimination charge and the EEOC attempts these settlements, if your previous employer does not cooperate, the agency’s legal staff may file a lawsuit to pursue charges. In most instances, however, the EEOC will grant you a Notice of Right to Sue your former employer on your own.
File a Lawsuit Against Your Employer in South Dakota
Before you can attempt suing for wrongful termination in South Dakota, you must receive Notice of Right to Sue your former employer through the EEOC. To file a lawsuit against employers for wrongful termination successfully, you will need to prove the law you employer broke and your cause of action for pursuing the lawsuit. Filing a wrongful termination claim against an employer in SD should only be done if you have sound evidence, such as testimonials from witnesses and records of interactions with co-workers to prove your case in court.
Can I file a lawsuit for wrongful termination? If you are unsure of how to file a wrongful termination lawsuit or if you have a valid case to pursue, you should consider hiring an experienced attorney to assist you. When you file a lawsuit against your employer in South Dakota, proving the unlawful termination through prepared evidence and explanations will be crucial to the success of your case.