Indiana is an employment-at-will state. Because of this, many employees can be fired for almost any reason. However, this does not mean that you have no right to contest such a decision if you feel it was unfair or in breach of your statutory rights. Wrongful termination is not something to be taken lightly as it can have a serious impact on your day to day life. It is important to challenge such decisions, although it can sometimes be a long and difficult process.
A former County Administrator in Minnesota has been embroiled in an ongoing feud with the county over his discharge in May 2014. His dismissal came after an investigation showed that he was improperly involved in a solar-energy project. According to the investigation, he had not given the county adequate notification that his wife was employed by the company that proposed the project.
He has contested the alleged findings, claiming that he was not provided with enough opportunity to clarify the matter to the board. He has requested an opportunity to discuss the matter publicly with the board, but he does not yet have a date for the hearing or even an estimation of how far off it might be.
As a result, he has chosen to file a complaint with the state’s Department of Human Rights. The department may decide to proceed with an investigation, which in turn could lead to a lawsuit. A lawyer for the former County Administrator has expressed confidence that the department will move forward with the complaint.
It may be happening in another state, but this case serves as an example to workers in Indiana. Even if it appears difficult, it is worth challenging your employer if you feel you have been wrongfully dismissed. An attorney can help you understand your rights and may be able to assist you in reaching a fair resolution to the situation.
Source: Winona Daily News, “Hebert files state discrimination claim against county,” Tesla Mitchell, July 14, 2014