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What is wrongful termination?

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Quick Answer

Wrongful termination means a worker is illegally fired from a job in contradiction to contract terms or for discriminatory reasons. If an employee is fired because a boss doesn't like him, this termination is wrongful if an employment contract only allows termination for cause or poor performance.

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Full Answer

Several categories of discrimination in termination are illegal based on federal and state laws. Race, national origin and gender are among the primary personal qualities that an employer cannot legally use in making termination decisions. To do so constitutes wrongful termination. Termination decisions are not legal if they are based on age, religion or pregnancy. Some state laws also make it wrongful to terminate employment based on sexual orientation.

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