Workplace harassment is, unfortunately, an all-too-common occurrence in the workplace. For many years, victims had no way of fighting back; those who raised complaints usually faced some kind of retaliatory action, including termination.
Although it's still not uncommon for people to be terminated after being harassed in the workplace, the legal system now provides victims with a way of fighting back. If you think you're facing termination after being harassed at work, there are a few things you should do.
Resigning reduces or even eliminates the value of your claim against your employer. Many people who face workplace harassment quit their jobs. Even if you're sure that you're about to lose your job, resigning is not in the best interests of your case. If you feel you have to resign, talk to your lawyer about your options first.
Remove Your Personal Items and Documents
If you feel that a termination is looming, discreetly remove any documents and items that are of a personal nature. Personal emails that you also believe to be confidential should also be deleted. You may be escorted out of the building without warning in case you're terminated. This means you may not get a chance to collect your items or anything that might help your case.
However, you should not take anything that belongs to your employer. Even if such items can help your case, accessing or removing these items provides your employer with justifiable grounds to fire you. This can hurt your claims. Ask your wrongful termination attorney about any documents whose ownership you're not sure of.
Anything you say or do can be used against you in court. It's possible that your employer or a co-worker may start to treat you in a hostile manner after you file a harassment complaint. Although it's tempting to 'go all out' on them, this can hurt your case. You should also ensure that you continue following all workplace rules and regulations.
Get a Lawyer ASAP
The longer it takes you to get a lawyer, the longer you deny yourself legal counsel that could shift the balance of your case. Many employees who're facing termination have delayed getting legal counsel. Because of this, many have made mistakes that hurt their case. For example, some people are unaware that there's a time limit for filing a complaint after being retaliated against. Legal counsel will keep you from making such mistakes. Just remember: take the time to consult with several wrongful termination lawyers before you decide which one you feel is best-suited to work with you on your case.
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