What is wrongful termination, discharge or dismissal?
In Alabama, unless there is an agreement to the contrary, employment is “at will.” This means that either the employer or the employee may end the employment relationship without giving either notice or a reason. However, while this is true in theory, Alabama statutes and courts have changed the traditional doctrine to some degree.
Age discrimination. Employers may not discriminate against an employee for opposing any unlawful age discrimination in an employment practice or for filing, testifying in, or participating in a hearing, investigation, or proceeding under the age bias law (AL Code Sec. 25-1-28).
Election day officials. On election day, employers with over 25 employees must excuse from work without penalty or loss of time any appointed precinct election official so that he or she can perform the duties of his or her position. The employee must provide his or her employer with documentation of the appointment and the dates of required service at least 7 days in advance of the expected absence (AL Code Sec. 17-8-13).
Garnishment. An employer may not discharge or refuse to hire anyone because his or her wages have been garnished for family support (AL Code Sec. 30-3-70). There is more information available on this subject.
Jury duty. It is illegal to discharge or take any adverse employment action against an employee for serving on a jury as long as the employee reports to work at his or her next regularly scheduled hour after being dismissed from the jury (AL Code Sec. 12-16-8.1).
Religious/political affiliations. No person may be discriminated against in public employment because of his or her political or religious affiliations or opinions (AL Code Sec. 36-26-38).
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