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What to Do If You Believe You Have Been Fired for a Discriminatory Reason

There are many situations where it might be completely fair for an employer to dismiss somebody from their job.

However, unfair or discriminatory dismissal may occur if the employee is dismissed on the basis of their gender, family situation, sexual orientation, age, race, religion, or medical condition.

While being dismissed from work is usually an upsetting experience for anybody, it can be even more distressing if you believe that you were not fired for something that you did, but rather simply for just being who you are.

If this is the situation, you may have a case for unfair dismissal. Here’s what to do next:

Make Sure You Have Actually Lost Your Job

First of all, make sure that you have actually been dismissed from the position. Most of the time it will be rather clear, but in some cases, you could mistake being suspended, for example, as being dismissed.

Most companies have a process that they will need to follow when dismissing an employee, so it’s important to determine where you are during this stage.

Most of the time, it will involve letters explaining any disciplinary actions to be taken towards you, a formal meeting and disciplinary decision, and the opportunity to appeal.

Was the Dismissal Discriminatory?

It’s important to determine if the dismissal was actually discriminatory. The problem with this is that most employers are not going to give a discriminatory reason for letting you go, even if that’s the real cause.

For example, if you have been having trouble at work because you are a single parent, that might be the real reason masked behind another reason given for terminating your employment.

In this situation, you can benefit from the help of a professional discrimination attorney who can help you determine if the dismissal would be classed as discriminatory or not.

Were You Discriminated Against at Work?

Whether or not you experienced discriminatory treatment in the workplace can strengthen your case for discriminatory and unfair dismissal.

For example, if you were often made fun of at work for your sexual orientation or gender identity, this could be key evidence in winning your case.

Similarly, if you received racist treatment in the workplace and believe that the dismissal may be linked to this, any evidence that you can find will help.

It may also be worth asking any former colleagues that you trust to act as witnesses on your behalf.

Submitting an Appeal

Finally, you will usually be required to submit an internal appeal to the company before you are able to go ahead with an unfair dismissal case.

Employers need to put a clear system in place for employees who want to appeal any disciplinary action taken against them, so it’s important to begin this process first as outlined by your former employer.


Losing your job is never a nice experience, and it’s even more unpleasant when you believe that the reason may be discriminatory against you.

If you think that you have been unfairly dismissed on the basis of discrimination, it’s important to start the appeals process and get legal help.

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