If I was wrongfully terminated and my previous employer investigated, found in my favor and rehired me, canI get lost wages?

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If I was wrongfully terminated and my previous employer investigated, found in my favor and rehired me, canI get lost wages?

My supervisor fired me for no call no shows but she lied. I filed for unemployment and they told the workforce commission that I quit. I contacted HR and they investigated finding in my favor and rehired me. They apologized for the wrongful termination thereby admitting to it. I was out for 3 months and lost wages for that time.

Asked on March 6, 2012 under Employment Labor Law, Texas

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

No, it is very unlikely that you would have any right to lost wages unless--

1) you had a contract (including union agreement) which was violated;

2) you were fired due to specifically illegal discrimination (for example, the law bars discriminating against an employee due to his/her race, sex, religion, age over 40, or disability); or

3) you were fired in retaliation for raising some protected claim, such as that you were discriminated against or were owed overtime.

However, the problem for you is that apart from the above, the law lets an employer fire you for any reason or even no reason at all (apart from wanting to fire you). Your supervisor may have violated some internal company policy or rule about how/when to terminate employees, but the law does not enforce those. For example, while your employer chose to rehire you, they did not have to--even if your supervisor lied about why you were fired, the employer could have let the termination stand and refused to rehire. Therefore, you would not seem to have any legal right to the lost wages, since you could have been terminated notwithstanding that you did not in fact have no call, no shows.


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