Details continue to emerge regarding the termination from employment of the former Chief Technology Officer of Blue Cross Blue Shield of California. The former employee alleges that he was wrongfully terminated from his position for criticizing a contract agreed to by the company's CIO, his supervisor. He alleges that he repeatedly recommended an alternative plan that would have saved the organization $3 million dollars but was asked to cease discussing the issue by the CIO. He has also pointed out that his firing occurred one day before he was due a $450,000 bonus.
The employer claims the man was terminated for repeated misuse of his corporate credit card. They claim that 75% of the expenses were excessive and not business-related, including trips and outings with his girlfriend, actress Tara Reid.
A wrongful termination from employment occurs when an employee is fired for illegal reasons. Among these reasons are violations of discrimination or harassment protections, violations of labor laws, or termination in retaliation for reporting a complaint in good faith. The employee must be able to prove the termination was based on an illegal reason, rather than another circumstance. Establishing such proof can be difficult, as the employee often does not possess all the facts necessary to determine the employer's intent. Additionally, most employees are classified as at-will, meaning their employer can terminate them at any time for any reason.
Those who believe they have been wrongfully terminated may pursue a legal claim for damages against their employer. Consulting an employment law attorney experienced in such matters can be crucial to the success of one's claim.
Source: FierceHealthPayer.com, "Fired Blue Shield of California exec faces scrutiny for lavish spending," Dori Zweig, Apr. 27, 2015