Am I still the boss off the clock and away from the office?

I’m at home on my time, my office calls and says one of my employees has called
off from work and asked who was coming in to cover the shift. I asked why they
called off and they didn’t know.
I called the employee and asked why they couldn’t come to work, they say they
had Diarrhea.
In my joking manner, I told him to get a butt-plug and come to work…
A couple days later, my boss calls me and says the employee has filed a formal
complain against me for some type of harassment…
Yes I was surprised too.
My question is
If i’m off the clock away from the office, and I say something that may offend a
coworker/employee, can I be written up for it?
I am an hourly supervisor, I clock in and out like everyone else.

Asked on September 15, 2016 under Employment Labor Law, California

Answers:

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

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

Yes, you can be written up for this. The fact is that most employment is what is known as "at will". This means that a company can set the conditions of employment much as it sees fit. This includes writing up a worker for the reason that you state, for any reason or for no reason at all (the same for termination). The exceptions here would be if there is an existing employment contract/union agreement prohibiting such an action or if your treatment constitutes some form of legally actionable discrimination.


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