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3 Musts for Employee Terminations in the United States

  • By: lipplaw
    Published: May 26, 2021

Termination of employment in the United States can be a complex process, especially if you are not familiar with the legal landscape. There are three key things to keep in mind when terminating an employee: address the employee with respect, make it a brief 2-way conversation, and have proper documentation which follows state and federal laws.

Use Kindness and Respect

Disrespected or mistreated employees are much more likely to leave your company with a bad taste in their mouth and have the power to wreak havoc for months or even years after they are separated. Lead with kindness, respect, and compassion. It costs nothing and is a major way to reduce lawsuit risk.

Short, 2-Way Termination Conversation 

A brief in-person or videoconference termination discussion is ideal. Body language is evidence, and if a company does a telephone termination, this evidence is lost. If state laws allow for one-party consent to record, consider recording the conversation.

Precede with Notice, Documentation, and Legal Consultation 

Some companies come to me with termination documentation but miss a step. Meet with the employee, tell them what needs to change, and give them the opportunity to fix it, if possible.

Verbal discussion followed up by email to the employee places the employee on notice of what is wrong with their performance and provide them with the opportunity to fix it.

This step also can give the employee lead time to see the writing on the wall and get another job lined up.

Need help with an employee termination issue? Contact The Lipp Law Firm today.

Kathryn Megan Lipp

Katie dedicates her practice to employment separation guidance.
Based on her successful employment litigation practice...Read More