Wrongful termination and severance packages

When Louisiana workers are wrongfully terminated, they might find themselves angry, stressed, and fearful for their financial future. However, the law seeks to protect workers from wrongful termination, whether based on sexual discrimination or an employee's race, violation of contractual agreements, or retaliation for reporting an employer's wrongful acts or omissions. Though these matters often go to court, they do not always have to.

In some instances, a wrongfully terminated employee and his or her employer may be able to negotiate a fair resolution. Many times, through skilled negotiation, a wrongfully terminated employee can acquire a severance package that gives him or her some financial security and peace of mind. However, when an individual accepts a severance package in a wrongful termination context, he or she usually must agree to waive any legal claims against his or her employer.

Some tips might help individuals in such a situation determine if a severance package is right for them. First, former employees should always take time to thoroughly consider any offers. Second, wrongfully terminated employees should always ask to have the offers put in writing. Third, if possible, refuse the offer to quit rather than being fired. This might protect your ability to take wrongful termination legal action in the future. Fourth, former employees should negotiate to try to keep their health insurance so long as they are receiving severance pay. Lastly, these individuals should ensure that no contingencies are placed on their severance package.

Waiving legal rights in exchange for a severance package is a huge decision. To ensure their legal rights are protected and that they have the potential to reaches the fairest outcome possible under the circumstances, it may be beneficial for wrongfully terminated employees to discuss the matter with an experienced legal professional.

Source: FindLaw, "Wrongful Termination Claims," accessed on Mar. 1, 2015