Unfortunately, the economic downturn means many employers must now discharge employees. To assist supervisors handling terminations, some employers create termination checklists. These checklists help ensure that proper procedures are followed and that a company acts consistently. Although termination checklists cannot guarantee that an employer will not be sued by a disgruntled former employee, they may help minimize an employer’s liability and enable the employer to maintain good relations with both current and former employees.
Termination checklists may include simple reminders of what to collect from the employee (keys, parking tags) and information related to the employee’s last check or benefits. Often, employers create more comprehensive checklists. A more comprehensive checklist may include questions related to whether company policies have been explained to the employee, whether disciplinary actions have been properly documented, and the reasoning behind the discharge. Questions may focus on whether a discharge might appear to be motivated by discrimination.
Completing a checklist forces a supervisor to evaluate the company’s actions. For example, a supervisor may realize that, while he spoke with an employee about a disciplinary issue, he never completed a disciplinary report. With this knowledge, the employer may wish to avoid terminating an employee until the proper documentation has been collected.
To speak with an employment law attorney regarding termination issues or for assistance in drafting a termination checklist, contact the employment law attorneys at Clouse Dunn Khoshbin LLP at [email protected]