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Involuntary Terminations: Kentucky

Involuntary Terminations requirements for other states

Federal law and guidance on this subject should be reviewed together with this section.

Author: Cynthia Blevins Doll, Fisher Phillips


  • Where a verbal contract or the terms of an employee handbook or policy manual have created an employment contract, Kentucky employees may then only be terminated for cause. However, there is no universal definition of cause in the state of Kentucky. See Termination for Cause.
  • The Kentucky Civil Rights Act mirrors federal anti-discrimination legislation, but adds a category of protected employees not recognized at the federal level. See The Kentucky Civil Rights Act.
  • Unlike federal anti-discrimination legislation, the Kentucky Civil Rights Act does not place a cap on damages, meaning some employees may be more likely to assert their claims in state court. See The Kentucky Civil Rights Act.