Can I be fired from my job for furthering my education?

I have been a CNA at a large hospital for 4 years. During that time I earned my RN. Now, they have posted my current job. I have never been given a verbal or written warning and have been told they are going to fire me. Can they do this?

Asked on July 25, 2012 under Employment Labor Law, Ohio

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

If you do not have an employment contract, you may be fired at any time, for any reason whatsoever, without prior write-ups or warnings, so long as the termination is not:

1) for an illegal discriminatory reason (e.g. because you are a woman, or because of your race, religion, age over 40, or disability)

2) retaliation for having filed a protected claim (such as that you suffered discrimination or for overtime) or used a protected benefit (like FMLA leave)

3) retaliation for bringing a legal violation to light.

If you have an employment contract, you may only be fired in a way that comports with the contract's terms.


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