You know you do a great job at work, but out of nowhere, you get a negative performance evaluation. Rather than question your capabilities, you need to be more concerned that the review was a pretext for termination. Unfortunately, some companies are not honest when it comes to terminations, instead blaming the employee for something that was never done.
Using a poor performance evaluation as a reason for terminating an employee is an all-too-common practice. While this can happen because of a lack of understanding, it can also be done to cover up a sexual harassment claim, avoid paying unemployment, or a host of other things. Therefore, if you suspect this might be the case in your situation, you need to take appropriate action by hiring an attorney who handles performance evaluation discrimination cases.
If you get wind that a termination is coming or you suspect something is amiss and you have the opportunity, start gathering as much evidence as possible. For example, print off copies of past reviews that show you are a loyal, honest, and hard-working employee. Also, get a copy of any recommendations for raises or promotions, awards or certificates, and so on.
While you need to be careful not to get other employees in trouble, if you have trusted friends in the workplace, you might ask if they would write a letter on your behalf or be willing to testify if you take the company to court. Also, talk to your past supervisors or managers, asking for letters regarding your performance and attendance under their watch.
Because the review came from your superior, trying to get information from that individual might be a moot point. Therefore, go to your HR department to get more details. You also have the legal right to file a complaint with HR without fear of repercussions. However, if you get terminated before you have the chance to do this, you need to speak with an attorney who specializes in this area of the law.
In order to terminate you, your employer must prove that you did not perform your duties to a satisfactory level, had poor attendance, struggled with getting to work on time, were disruptive on the job, could not get along with coworkers, stole something, or had other issues. By law, the company has to provide you with a reason, whether it is valid or not. By using your evidence, you can show your attorney that the accusations against you are false.
Your attorney will conduct an investigation and obtain more detailed documentation and information than what the company provided you. Together, you will go over everything to confirm that you were terminated without warrant. The performance termination attorney will then fight on your behalf to seek monetary loss.
The good news is that you have a legal support system that can help. Instead of accepting what you might perceive as the inevitable, take advantage of it. If your employer gave you a bad evaluation that you know is inaccurate, you need legal representation.