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Man stands up to 'toxic boss' and seeks law's help after wrongful dismissal over paternity leave

The boss unlawfully fired the employee citing 'insubordination' as the reason when he asked for paternity leave under the new state law.

Man stands up to 'toxic boss' and seeks law's help after wrongful dismissal over paternity leave
Representative Cover Image Source: (L) Pexels | RDNE Stock project, (R) Reddit

Getting laid off from a job without any notice is nothing new if you are working in a private company. During the pandemic, many people lost their jobs with valid reasons or a timeframe to adjust to the changes. Recently, a user on Reddit who has gone through the same trouble shared how he stood up to his "toxic boss" and took proper measures to teach his former company a lesson for firing him unlawfully. 

Representational Image Source: Pexels | Nathan Cowley
Representational Image Source: Pexels | Nathan Cowley


The post title reveals that the employee got fired for "insubordination" when he filed for a state-protected paternity leave. According to the detailed post, the man had been working for this small company for only 18 months so far. He knew that the owner (referred to as Bert here) was "toxic" and yet he took the job because he needed the money. The company cast plasters in figures and the employee was an hourly worker.

When the employee welcomed a baby, he decided to ask Bert for paternity leave. After an initial discussion with Bert, he realized he could take paternity leave, but it would be unpaid. Taking two weeks of leave to adjust to life with a newborn in the house, upon his return to the office, the man was handed over a check for two weeks by Bert, who told him to keep quiet about it because he thinks other employees will go and have kids if they find out he's paying for parental leave. After some time, the state issued new laws for maternity and paternity leaves. "Our paychecks came with news about state law regarding family/medical leave. Under this law, I qualified for more paternity leave paid for by the state. I informed Bert that I've filed for more paternity leave under the new state law," the post read.

Representational Image Source: Pexels | Andrea Piacquadio
Representational Image Source: Pexels | Andrea Piacquadio


Bert responded to it a bit rudely and made the employee feel entitled to take time off for childcare. "I was sure that I was getting the boot. On my way out, tell him that I'll be contacting BOLI (Bureau of Labor and Industries) based on our conversation that morning. Bert denied saying anything like that. He said I was inferring a meaning from something that didn't happen. That seems like gaslighting to me. He and the office lady handed me my walking papers and last paycheck. The justification is insubordination related to demolding methods," the employee shared. 

As the employee ended up being jobless on Labor Day, he decided to contact the Labor Department, hoping to seek justice for getting wrongfully terminated by a "toxic" boss. He further listed how many other ex-employees had problems while working with Bert and claimed that the company had a bad reputation.

Image Source: Reddit | skillz7930
Image Source: Reddit/u/skillz7930


u/NoMoreMonkeyBrain suggested: "Please contact a lawyer ASAP and try to get as much of this bullshit confirmed in writing. If you can get the proof together, this is a slam-dunk workplace discrimination lawsuit. If you can't get the proof together, it's somewhere between possible and a slam dunk." u/spideygene wrote: "So this owner, actually fires you right after you filed for maternity leave? Wow. Once the lawsuit for unlawful dismissal is settled, spring for a thank you card." 

Image Source: Reddit | Whole-Wishbone-7539
Image Source: Reddit/u/Whole-Wishbone-7539


u/Haaaave_A_Good_Day_ commented: "There’s a record of you receiving the info sheet about the new law as well as you filing for additional leave that you’re entitled to. And given what you’ve shared about Bert and his company’s reputation, there’s probably a lot of dirt that a labor attorney could dig up, including the details about your conversations with him." u/DMGXeraxus added: "Please find an employment attorney, he fired you the same day you filed for a protective leave." 

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