Many employees have problems at some point with their employers, but these can usually be remedied. In some instances, however, the complaint could result in the employee being fired unjustly. A man working for a planning commission in West Virginia filed a complaint and spoke to the mayor, remarking that some of the drainage from sidewalk projects was going onto his property. He claims that he sought financial relief for the inconvenience. After reporting the incident, he claims he lost his job.
According to his complaint, the mayor was apparently angered and wrote a letter to the plaintiff, telling him he was fired. At the next planning meeting, the plaintiff claims he was told by the mayor that he had no business being there. In front of the commission, the plaintiff allegedly was asked by the mayor if he had received his termination letter yet.
The plaintiff replied that he had received his letter, but it was not effective yet. Allegedly, the mayor responded and said that the letter contained a typo and that he was already fired. The man believes that the mayor acted with approval from the Winfield Town Council and without going through all of the proper legal channels.
The man filed a claim against the town of Winfield for which he worked as well as the mayor for being fired unjustly, slander and the intentional infliction of emotional trauma. He seeks a public apology for the behavior as well as an award of monetary damages, court costs and a court order returning him to his former position. There are many reasons for which an employee can be fired under the law, but if the worker is fired for a questionable reason, he or she may file a claim against the employer. If the case is successfully navigated, the claimant may receive lost wages, other financial relief as deemed by a civil court in West Virginia and possibly reinstatement.
Source: The West Virginia Record, "Former Winfield employee claims wrongful termination after dispute with mayor", Kelly Holleran, Oct. 15, 2014