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Termination (with Discharge)
National Summary
Termination, while often unpleasant, is simply a necessary part of the employment relationship. Fortunately for employers and employees alike, employment is generally considered at will, which means that either the employee or the employer may terminate an employment relationship at any time and for any reason—any legal reason, that is.
Of course, as with nearly all legal principles, there are limits to the at-will principle. For example, if an employment relationship is established and protected by contract, such as a collective bargaining agreement in a unionized workplace, this agreement limits the parties’ rights to terminate employment. Additionally, note that termination can be for any legal reason. Numerous state and federal laws supersede and limit an employer’s otherwise absolute right to terminate employment—for example, when the reason for termination is based on a protected class, status, or activity.
Finally, note that public employers and employers in the state of Montana generally do not have the at-will principle at hand, so these employers may have to follow specified discharge procedures.
In addition to the laws governing why termination may occur, employers may also be required to abide by specific practices regarding how termination can occur. Employees may be entitled to receive notice, continuation of health benefits, and timely payout of earned compensation.
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159148tools.aspxPolicies Employment at Will 03/07/2016National
156489index.aspxAnalysis Termination (with Discharge) 03/04/2009National
155961index.aspxQuestions & Answers Is an employee that voluntarily resigns entitled to compensation during the notice period given even if the employer decides not to allow the employee to work out the notice period? 04/25/2008National
155550index.aspxQuestions & Answers If an employee submits her two week notice, are we required to pay that two weeks if we decide to let the employee go immediately? We are located in Nevada. 05/08/2007National
152159index.aspxQuestions & Answers I read that employees in Michigan can not be disciplined for disclosing their pay to other employees. Please tell me which statute or law this provides employees with this protection. 09/30/2003National
153009tools.aspxPolicies Job Abandonment Guidelines 09/17/2003National
152158index.aspxQuestions & Answers In the state of Washington, is a employer required by law to pay out accured vacation time when an employee is terminated, laid off or resigns? 07/22/2003National
152157index.aspxQuestions & Answers Upon termination of an employee for unacceptable performance, is the employer compelled by law in the state of Washington, to pay employee any unused vacation or sick leave time? 06/03/2003National
152156index.aspxQuestions & Answers Can we add to our attendance policy a "no call, no show" stipulation that states that if an employee does not call their supervisor, and fails to show up for a scheduled shift, it will be considered a voluntary resignation? 05/08/2003National
152155index.aspxQuestions & Answers What do the laws in Kentucky say about information disclosure to a teminated employee, what do we have to give him and what do we not? 04/28/2003National
152153index.aspxQuestions & Answers 2 questions: 1) what if my employee doesnt want to sign that she recieved a written warning and 2) what if she is "very angry"- (ie doesnt want to work on these issues, etc.) 04/24/2003National
152154index.aspxQuestions & Answers Is Georgia an " employment-at-will state"? 04/22/2003National
152152index.aspxQuestions & Answers Could you clarify what is the law in DC for issuing final paychecks for hours worked and vacation payout for terminated employees? 04/16/2003National
152150index.aspxQuestions & Answers We are a mfg company in Texas. I have been unable to locate any paperwork on this employee. Unfortunately, I have been unable to locate any paperwork on an employee we wish to fire. Can we still terminate him without worrying about repercussions? 03/26/2003National
153007tools.aspxPolicies Termination of employment policy (strict) 03/21/2003National
153008tools.aspxPolicies Termination pay policy (strict) 03/21/2003National
153006tools.aspxPolicies Termination of employment policy (progressive) 03/20/2003National
153005tools.aspxPolicies Termination and severance pay policy (standard) 03/20/2003National
152149index.aspxQuestions & Answers We are a California employer. I know state law says we have to pay him within a certain timeframe (upon termination) but we can't give him his check if he doesn't show up to get it. He also still has company equipment. What can we do? 03/13/2003National
152148index.aspxQuestions & Answers If an exempt employee's sick time taken exceeds his sick time accrued and he is then terminated, can we apply his unused, accrued vacation toward the sick time he took before it was accrued? 03/11/2003National
152147index.aspxQuestions & Answers Can you discipline or even terminate an employee who's spouse/family members are constantly calling them at work which prevents the person answering the phone from doing their job? 03/07/2003National
152146index.aspxQuestions & Answers Termination - Is there a process or procedure to follow in order to terminate an employee in the state of Texas. 03/05/2003National
152145index.aspxQuestions & Answers when do i legally HAVE to get an employee their paycheck upon their termination. How many business days from their last day? 02/28/2003National
152144index.aspxQuestions & Answers What to do when a manager says she quits and walks out. However 2 1/2 later she returns to work like nothing happens. The first time she did these she was spoken to, but it seems as everytime she doesn't get what she wants she threatens to quit. 02/24/2003National
153087tools.aspxChecklists Checklist for Termination II 01/29/2003National
153088tools.aspxChecklists Termination Checklist I 01/28/2003National
152141index.aspxQuestions & Answers Am I allowed to Terminate and employee's employment for Violating company policy if the infraction is their 1st offense, if the policy reads zero tolerence? 01/08/2003National
152142index.aspxQuestions & Answers Would we have to pay all our hourly employees an extra 10 hours when they leave our employment if we tell one that we will pay? 01/02/2003National
152108index.aspxQuestions & Answers The company has a paid sick leave policy that states you can accrue up to 60 days or 420 hours of sick leave. Is the accrued sick time considered as wages earned and owed to the employee at termination? 12/17/2002National
152135index.aspxQuestions & Answers An employee phoned the CEO while drinking on duty. Our employee handbooks says use/consumption of alcohol while on duty is grounds for termination. We are generally, an at-will employer. Can we terminate safely? 12/10/2002National
152139index.aspxQuestions & Answers The employee in question of termination has been here 13 years and there are several employees who are newer than her, however, her productivity is not as good as the recent hires. We do not want to open ourselves up to any kind of wrongful discharge 12/06/2002National
152100index.aspxQuestions & Answers We have a disruptive employee. She is curently on a 30 day probation. After the 30 days pass and if no improvement is seen in the employee's attitude and adherence to policies is seen, are we able to suspend the employee without pay? 11/26/2002National
152114index.aspxQuestions & Answers Our policy states "if you fail to call in or report to work for 3 consecutive days we will assume that you have voluntarily resigned your employment". An employee has phoned in sick for 3 days, and then failed to show up/call for 2 more days. 11/08/2002National
152110index.aspxQuestions & Answers What recourse does an employer have if they made an overpayment of salary to a terminated employee? 11/07/2002National
152113index.aspxQuestions & Answers Is it legal to fire a person who is suing our company? 10/31/2002National
152089index.aspxQuestions & Answers I have an employee that has been diagnosed with Psychotic Disorder NOS. His co-workers are afraid of him and on top of it he was found kicking a container becuse it fell on the floor. What are my options here? 10/17/2002National
152137index.aspxQuestions & Answers We have an employee that has brought a doctor's excuse indicating that "she is medically disabled and should not return to work for the indefinite future." We are a company under 15 employees. What obligations do we have to this employee? 10/14/2002National
152092index.aspxQuestions & Answers When an employee resigns and the employer ask the employee to leave prior to the stated date in the resignation letter is it a law that the employer pays out notice? 10/08/2002National
152120index.aspxQuestions & Answers When terminating a female key employee, should there still be both a female and a male present? Or, does that change because they hold a key position in the company? 09/24/2002National
152079index.aspxQuestions & Answers If we are looking to terminate an employee for poor work performance, but she is pregnant, over 40 and a minority, what risks are we taking? 09/18/2002National
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