Why You Need Both Vocational and Economic Experts in Wrongful Termination Cases

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wrongful termination case

If you are professional who suffered discrimination at work, who was subjected to a hostile atmosphere, who had to deal with an employer fabricating situations only to paper your file with reasons to let you go, and who was ultimately fired by your employer based on those bogus reasons, then you have a very strong wrongful termination case.

Wrongful Termination Cases Vindicate Serious Wrongs

Wrongful termination cases are very serious because the act of an employer in firing you after manufacturing the reasons for your termination can have a devastating impact on your life. You have devoted your life to a particular career, and your employer has not only unfairly taken active steps to remove you from a job that gives you income, but likely is inflicting harm on your reputation, and thus your ability to find similar work elsewhere.

Indeed, there are many employers who are so unscrupulous that they have no compunction about harming an employee’s reputation in addition to terminating employment. That kind of bad behavior, tied to discriminatory animus, can be toxic for someone’s career, even when it was the employer who was acting wrongfully.

The question becomes, then, how should you be compensated for the wrongful termination? For most, if not all, wrongful termination cases, it is vital that you have proof of damages not only from an economic expert but also from a vocational expert.  In this article, we will explain why you need both

If, after reviewing this article, you have additional questions about your own wrongful termination matter, your own personal injury lawsuit, or life care planning in general, we invite you to contact us at Occupational Assessment Services, Inc. – OAS.   

We are one of the most experienced employability and life care planning firms in the United States.  To discuss your case, call us at 1-800-292-1919, contact us at a location near you, or through our online form.

First, You Need an Economic Expert

In all wrongful termination cases, the first item of evidence that you need to show, in order to prove the damages that flowed from the wrongful termination, is your loss of income.  

In this context, your loss of income includes several numbers. First, it includes the amount of income you would have received from the moment of termination up to the present had you not been wrongfully terminated. That is commonly known as back pay.

Also, your loss of income includes the amount of income you could have expected into the future had you not been wrongfully terminated. That is considered future wages, or front pay.  

The final number economists provide in wrongful termination cases is the value of salary plus expected promotions and raises, and the value of fringe benefits like retirement plans, bonuses, and stock options.

In sum, an economist is instrumental in wrongful termination cases to prove the number of money damages you should receive based on your salary figures.

The One Caveat to Damages – You Need to Mitigate

Another component of wrongful termination cases is the need for the plaintiff to mitigate his or her damages when possible. What that means is if you are reasonably able to find a job in your profession, or close to it, then you would have an obligation to take that job. The goal here is for you to offset – or mitigate – the amount of back pay and front pay that you might be owed as a result of your wrongful termination.  

To be sure, the obligation to mitigate does not mean you need to take any job. It has to be reasonably appropriate to your experience and level of skill.

The real reason for this mitigation rule is so that plaintiffs do not try to sue for wrongful termination and remain purposely unemployed to make sure that the damages against the former employer are as high as possible.  

Given your duty to reasonably mitigate, the role of the vocational expert comes into play. The next section tells you why.

Second, You Need a Vocational Expert 

Why do you need this additional expert? Well, economists do not specialize in studying job markets – vocational experts do. Thus, when you are pressed as to whether you fulfilled your duty to make reasonable efforts to mitigate your damages after your wrongful termination, a vocational expert will be instrumental in explaining to the court why your efforts to get another job were, or were not, successful.

Indeed, vocational experts have the skill to look at the job market in your region, for people at your experience and skill level, and be able to explain what future earning options are available to you.

If the labor market in your geographic area is not good for someone with your skills, then the employer will need to pay you a higher amount in damages because you are forced to take a job at a lower wage.

Also, a vocational expert will be able to give the court opinion on whether you did, in fact, make reasonable efforts to mitigate your damages by engaging in a reasonable job search.

Let OAS Be Your Vocational Expert, We Have Worked on Many Wrongful Termination Cases

The vocational experts at Occupational Assessment Services, Inc. (OAS) have over forty years of experience documenting the income potential and employment capacity of those with wrongful termination cases, as well as with the underemployed, unemployed, and disabled spouses in many types of cases

OAS specializes in working with the plaintiff or defense attorney to assist in objectively documenting the economics in a case. From the initial referral to the trial testimony, OAS works with the retaining attorney so that the vocational assessment of the case can be objectively and efficiently presented. 

We strongly believe in the importance of a clear and understandable presentation of the facts. OAS is the leading provider of Vocational Expert and Life Care Planning Services for Plaintiff and Defense attorneys. 

The company specializes in assisting attorneys in evaluating earning capacity in divorce cases and documenting the damages in cases where an individual has been severely injured by providing objective findings on how the injuries affect a persons’ ability to work and earn money, as well as the cost of care required in catastrophic injuries.

OAS is your Vocational Expert & Life Care Planner Nationwide, with offices in New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Georgia, Florida, Texas, Nevada, and California.  

Occupational Assessment Services, Inc. is one of the most experienced employability and life care planning firms in the United States. To discuss your case, call us at 1-800-292-1919, contact us at a location near you, or through our online form.