Massachusetts is an at-will employment state. Employers have wide discretion in making their own hiring and firing decisions. That being said, companies cannot terminate workers on illegal grounds. If you were fired due to discrimination, retaliation, or breach of an employment agreement, you may be able to hold your former employer liable through a wrongful termination claim.
This raises an important question: What type of compensation can you recover in a wrongful termination lawsuit in Western Massachusetts? The answer depends on the specific circumstances of your case. In this blog post, our Massachusetts wrongful termination lawyers provide an overview of the remedies available through a legal claim.
Know the Remedies in a Wrongful Termination Claim in Massachusetts
A wrongful termination is an illegal termination. If you were the victim of wrongful termination, you have the right to seek financial compensation for your personal losses—potentially including certain non-economic damages. Here is an overview of the remedies that you can seek in a wrongful termination claim in Massachusetts:
- Back Pay: Back pay is one of the primary remedies in a wrongful termination claim. You can seek compensation for the wages you would have received if you had never been removed on illegal grounds.
- Loss of Benefits: Beyond back pay, you can also seek compensation for loss of benefits, including things like health insurance coverage and contributions to retirement plans.
- Other Out-of-Pocket Expenses: If you sustained any other out-of-pocket financial losses as a result of the wrongful termination, you can claim those expenses in your lawsuit.
- Emotional Distress: A wrongful termination is not all about financial costs. Being fired on unlawful grounds can be deeply stressful. You may be entitled to compensation for emotional distress.
- Reasonable Attorneys’ Fees: A wrongfully terminated worker in Massachusetts can claim compensation for reasonable attorneys’ fees and other legal costs.
- Reinstatement: In some limited circumstances, an employee may be eligible for reinstatement at their previous position. In most cases, a reunification is not in the interest of either party—but there are some exceptions.
- Punitive Damages: Finally, in a narrow set of wrongful termination claims, punitive damages may be available. These types of damages are reserved for cases in which an employer acted in an especially egregious manner.
Ultimately, every wrongful termination claim involves its own unique set of facts. Damages are always calculated on a case-by-case basis, with careful consideration to the actual losses sustained by the wrongfully terminated employee. An experienced Massachusetts wrongful termination lawyer can help you seek all available legal remedies.
Speak to a Wrongful Termination Lawyer in Massachusetts
At Hayber, McKenna & Dinsmore, LLC, our Massachusetts employment law attorneys have deep experience handling wrongful termination claims. If you have any questions about the remedies available through a wrongful termination lawsuit, we are available to help. Give us a phone call at (413) 785-1400 or connect with us through our website for your fully private initial consultation. With offices in Northampton and Springfield, we represent employees throughout Massachusetts.