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Retaliatory Discharge

BAKER LAW PC, located in Portland, Oregon, handles issues and litigation regarding retaliatory discharge. We serve clients in Multnomah County, Washington County and Clackamas County, as well as in cities throughout Oregon, including eastern Oregon, the north coast, the gorge, central Oregon, and southern Oregon.

Oregon is known as an “employment at will” state. In plain English, the Employment At-Will doctrine means that employment is presumed to be voluntary and indefinite for both employees and employers, unless you have a contract that states otherwise. As an at-will employee, you may quit your job whenever and for whatever reason you want, usually without consequence. In turn, at-will employers may terminate you whenever and for whatever reason (as long as it is not an illegal reason), or for no reason, also usually without consequence. If the termination is for an illegal reason, the employer could be subject to paying her employee damages.

Wrongful Termination

Either party may end the employment relationship without prior notice, but neither party may breach a contract in doing so. Employers cannot violate state or federal laws, and generally cannot terminate employees who refuse to do something that is contrary to public policy and sound morality, for example, by firing an employee who rightfully reports a violation of law, rule, or regulation, which results in wrongful termination. For example, you cannot be fired for refusing to do something illegal, such as doctoring the records, firing someone else for an illegal reason, or filing a fraudulent insurance claim. Your employer cannot terminate you for refusing to violate the law. In addition, various state and federal laws protect you from being wrongfully terminated for certain reasons, such as reporting illegal company activity to the proper authorities or complaining about sexual harassment or other types of discrimination.

Whistleblower Protection

In addition, an employee cannot be unlawfully fired for exposing certain types of corruption or fraud in the workplace. These individuals have “blown the whistle” on a wide range of issues, such as employer misconduct, serious health and safety concerns related to the workplace, wage issues, and other employment issues.

If you would like to speak to an attorney at BAKER LAW PC regarding wrongful termination or retaliatory discharge, contact us online to discuss your options.