When it comes to being a public servant hired to ensure that specific laws are correctly enforced in West Virginia, that employee is expected to follow the law. However, one out-of-state man claims that his employment termination came as a result of his insistence to enforce the law as he interpreted it. As a result, the former employee filed a lawsuit against both the mayor who fired him and the town that the major served.
The plaintiff in this case was hired to assess property value. His assessment was then used to factor how much property tax the owner must pay. Certain charitable organizations are exempt from paying this tax or may, in some cases, receive an abatement which would ultimately decrease the amount of taxes paid. The man claims that he was fired for failing to allow an abatement for certain social clubs in the town.
Both the former employee and a representative from the town's Board of Assessors claimed that the social clubs were ineligible for abatements according to guidelines set by the state's Department of Revenue. However, the two people claim that when they notified the mayor that the clubs had not paid property taxes and did not qualify for abatements, the mayor was furious and ordered them to circumvent the directive. The plaintiff claims that he was fired the following day.
Although the man worked at will, he claims that his employment termination was unjust. As a result, he is seeking lost wages and emotional distress. Unfortunately, there are people in West Virginia who are also coping with the consequences of a wrongful termination. However, there are legal options available, including pursuing justice in a civil court. An attorney with experience with these types of cases can help victims better understand these options and take appropriate action.
Source: masslive.com, "'Half the taxpayers in town are idiots,' plaintiff in wrongful dismissal case claims former Mayor Greg Neffinger told him", Conor Berry, June 5, 2016