Wrongful termination in violation of public policy
January 9, 2010
One type of wrongful termination case arises when the employer’s conduct violating a statute that specifically gives the employee the right to sue when for a violation of the law, such as Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, where there has been discrimination by sex or race.
But when there is no specific legal violation of a statute that sets forth a remedy for the employee, then under case law of the State of Washington, there may still be a case of wrongful termination based on violation of “public policy.”
Washington courts have generally recognized the public policy exception when an employer terminates an employee as a result of his or her
1) refusal to commit an illegal act,
(2) performance of a public duty or obligation,
(3) exercise of a legal right or privilege, or
(4) in retaliation for reporting employer misconduct.