What is Constructive Discharge?

Serving the Greater Richmond Area, Virginia, & Maryland

Contact Us

worker getting yelled at

Quitting your job usually means that you cannot qualify for any benefits, like unemployment, while you look for a new position. This is why some employers will choose not to fire a worker, instead deciding to make things unbearable for them in their current position. If your employer has created a hostile work environment and you quit as a result, you may have been the victim of a constructive discharge. A Chesterfield County hostile work environment attorney can review your case and tell you more about your legal options.

What is a Hostile Work Environment?

In a hostile work environment, the actions and behaviors of your boss, co-workers, or another party have helped to create an environment where you are uncomfortable. There could be discrimination and harassment of multiple kinds in a hostile work environment. Eventually, you get tired of it and quit.

That is exactly what an employer may be hoping for. They do not have to worry about you seeking unemployment, and how can you sue them for wrongful termination if you were the one who quit? Well, you actually still might have some legal options. Because your employer and others created a hostile situation, you may be able say that there was really no other choice. That said, the legal standard for constructive discharge is very high. In order to prove your case, you will need to show that you had no other choice. It is advisable to seek a consultation with an attorney before you quit.

Do I Have a Claim for Wrongful Termination After a Constructive Discharge?

Some people who have experienced this do have the chance to pursue compensation in court. Constructive discharge can be difficult to prove though. This is why you should hire an attorney who has some experience handling these types of employment law cases and, if possible, consult with an attorney before quitting.

What Should I Do When I Feel Like I Am Being Pushed Out?

There are some steps that you should take if your feel like your workplace has suddenly become hostile. You should:

Document everything: A constructive discharge case cannot be made just based on a few one-off activities. Having a record of repeated, purposeful behavior can help bolster your case.

Report conditions to a supervisor: Even if your supervisor is part of a problem, you should submit some kind of report about what you are experiencing. This creates a paper trail. It also shows that the company was aware of the problem. That means that they could be penalized for doing absolutely nothing to fix the issues you were facing.

Consider hiring an employment attorney: A lawyer who has worked on hostile work environment cases in the past may have the knowledge and experience needed to prove constructive discharge.

Consult with an Employment Attorney

If you believe that you have a constructive discharge case, contact Passero Employment Law. We can schedule a consultation and talk to you about what you have experienced. If we think that you have some legal options, we will be ready to let you know what the next steps are.

Read Our Recent Blog Posts

Read More