Wrongful Termination

One excep­tion to the gen­eral rule in Col­orado of at-will employ­ment is wrong­ful dis­charge in vio­la­tion of pub­lic pol­icy. Claims that fall within this excep­tion are those that “involv[e] a mat­ter affect­ing soci­ety as a whole, rather than the per­sonal or pro­pri­etary inter­ests of the par­ties; actions which strike at the heart of a citizen’s social rights, duties, and respon­si­bil­i­ties; and actions by an employer which lead to an out­ra­geous result clearly incon­sis­tent with a stated pub­lic pol­icy.” Hoyt v. Tar­get Stores, 981 P.2d 188, 191 (Colo. App. 1998) (cita­tion omit­ted). Such claims have included “refusal to par­tic­i­pate in ille­gal activ­ity” and “the employee’s per­for­mance of an act that pub­lic pol­icy would encour­age under cir­cum­stances where retal­ia­tory dis­charge is sup­ported by evi­dence of employer’s bad faith, mal­ice, or retal­i­a­tion.” Mar­tin Mari­etta Corp. v. Lorenz, 823 P.2d 100, 107 (Colo. 1992) (cita­tions omit­ted). The essence of the public-policy excep­tion “is to ensure that in order to keep his or her job, an employee is not required to for­sake an impor­tant pub­lic duty (such as whistle-blowing) or to forgo a job-related right or priv­i­lege.” Coors Brew­ing Co. v. Floyd, 978 P.2d 663, 667 n.2 (Colo. 1999). Col­orado com­mon law claims for wrong­ful dis­charge in vio­la­tion of pub­lic pol­icy may be barred if they are pred­i­cated on the same con­duct cov­ered by statu­tory claims, such as Title VII or the Col­orado Anti-Discrimination Act.

Devoted Lawyers Fight­ing Against Wrong­ful Termination

At Rathod | Mohamedb­hai LLC, our lawyers have suc­cess­fully rep­re­sented many mem­bers of the com­mu­nity in wrong­ful ter­mi­na­tion cases. Suc­cess­fully bring­ing these cases requires detailed under­stand­ing of Col­orado laws, as Col­orado courts have repeat­edly held that statutes may serve as a source of pub­lic pol­icy. See, e.g., Flo­res v. Am. Pharm. Servs., 994 P.2d 455, 558 (Colo. App. 1999) (“[s]tatutes by their nature are the most rea­son­able and com­mon sources for defin­ing pub­lic pol­icy”). We will com­pre­hen­sively inves­ti­gate your mat­ter to ensure that your rights are enforced in the event you were wrong­fully terminated.

Wrong­ful Ter­mi­na­tion Law

We have exten­sive expe­ri­ence in com­mon law wrong­ful ter­mi­na­tion cases. Under the pub­lic pol­icy excep­tion to at-will employ­ment, an employee may recover dam­ages for wrong­ful dis­charge if the dis­charge was based on a refusal to engage in con­duct that would vio­late pub­lic pol­icy, or par­tic­i­pa­tion in con­duct that is pro­tected or encour­aged by pub­lic pol­icy. We will ensure that your employer’s deci­sion to ter­mi­nate your employ­ment does not con­tra­vene an impor­tant pub­lic pol­icy that impacts the pub­lic. We serve clients in Den­ver, Boul­der, and sur­round­ing com­mu­ni­ties in Col­orado and Wyoming.