Is it legal if after refusing to notarize any more at an employer, I was terminated a few days later?

I worked for a mortgage servicing company about 3 years ago. I was already a notary before I took the position at this employer. I was not hired to be a notary but was doing it as a courtesy. They had me do a private signing for 1 of our executives; I felt pressured to do this signing. The executive did not show up but a person from middle management did in their place. I said to the person that all parties signing would need to appear before me. I was then told that the executive couldn’t make it and that this was very important to them and it needed to be signed. After the signing, I expressed to another executive that I didn’t feel comfortable doing the signing. I then decided to no longer notarize as a courtesy, so I refused my notarial services. Then, 3 days later, I was fired. Remember I was never hired to be a notary for the company; I was hired to do something else but it helped the company that I was a notary.

Asked on December 26, 2018 under Employment Labor Law, Pennsylvania

Answers:

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 1 year ago | Contributor

Unless your termination violated the terms of an employment contract or union agreement, then you have no claim here. The fact is that most work relationships are "at will". This means that a company can set the conditions of employment much as it sees fit (absent some form of legally actionable discrimination). Accordingly, a worker can be discharged for any reason or no reason at all, with or without notice.

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 1 year ago | Contributor

Unless your termination violated the terms of an employment contract or union agreement, then you have no claim here. The fact is that most work relationships are "at will". This means that a company can set the conditions of employment much as it sees fit (absent some form of legally actionable discrimination). Accordingly, a worker can be discharged for any reason or no reason at all, with or without notice.


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