The wrongful termination suit cost that falls on an employer could be anywhere from $500 to the millions. The goal is to put the employee back in the financial position they would be in if the wrongful termination or illegal conduct never occurred. The cost of a settlement can cover a wide range of charges and responsibilities falling on the employer, and it’s a lot more than just lost wages. The court will base the compensation on what you lost (your damages) due to wrongful termination. There are many things that will contribute to the overall settlement amount of your wrongful termination suit. You will normally be entitled to at least your lost wages, but your employer could also be responsible for any costs of emotional damage, costs of your new job search, and medical expenses. If convicted, the defendant may even be required to pay punitive damages which is an amount decided by the court meant to punish them for wrongdoing.

Factors of a wrongful termination suit

Lost Earning

Lost wages are the most straightforward of the settlements you could receive from a wrongful termination lawsuit. Calculating this consists of 3 parts: 

  1. Past lost wages: the amount one would have made had the wrongful termination not occurred, including the value of any benefits. Calculated from the time of the termination to the court date and adjusted for inflation.
  1. Future lost wages: the amount the employee would have received from the employer had employment continued. The calculation starts from the verdict’s date to the date the job would have ended. Future lost wages also includes the value of any benefits. 
  1. Any other income lost, which was caused by the employer’s behavior. 

Emotional Damages 

Being fired is never easy. Being a target of discrimination or retaliation can take time to recover emotionally. Experiencing this in a work environment can cause more than stress and leads to depression, anxiety, PTSD, or a slew of other mental health problems. Recovering from Emotional damage takes time and money. Victims of emotional damage should never be responsible for these costs and are entitled to recovery. A wrongful termination suit will seek to recover losses suffered as a result of emotional distress. 

Cost of Job Search

Many people will have to cover out-of-pocket expenses when searching for a new job. An employer charged with a wrongful termination suit may be required to cover these costs. Job-hunting fees could include money paid for resume assistance, time spent taking interviews, and miles traveled to interviews. Keep receipts for job-search related expenses if you want to have these damages in your wrongful termination suit.  

Medical Expenses 

Medical expenses can include emotional distress and reimbursement for any medical treatment sought due to the wrongful termination. Furthermore, the employer could be responsible for any out-of-pocket cost of COBRA needed to continue health insurance coverage after a wrongful termination. Alternatively, suppose the wrongfully terminated worker falls ill. In that case, the settlement amount could also include payment of those hospital bills, surgeries, or doctor visits.

Punitive Damages For Wrongful Termination Suit

The court does not base punitive damages on any specific loss that befalls a wrongfully terminated employee. Instead, it’s intended to punish the employer for illegal activity. The same way an expensive speeding ticket deters drivers from speeding, costs of putative damages are designed to prevent employers from committing wrongful acts against employees.  

Choosing the right lawyer could play a big role in the total amount of damages you end up receiving. Some cases settle out of court, and some will have to go before a jury, so you must choose a well-versed lawyer to recover your maximum losses.