If an employee is placed on Administrative leave due to arrest How long are we required to hold his position?

We have an employee who was arrested for DUI with weapons, we have not terminated
him, pending outcome. However, it could take months for this to be resolved. How
long are we required to hold his position, if he should be able to return.
Unfortunately, he will have to remain on administrative leave and will not be
able to return, if at all due to the charges being reflective of his position as
we are a security company.

Asked on September 8, 2016 under Employment Labor Law, Connecticut


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

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

Is there a union/collective bargaining agreement that covers this situation? How about an exisiting employment contract? Would terminating this worker's employment constitute some form of legally actionable discrimination (which it doesn't appear to)? If not, then as an "at will" employee, you can discharge them for any reason or no reason at all. The fact is that a company can set the terms of employment much as it sees fit or deems appropriate.

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

Unless he has a contract or union agreement guarantying him a position (i.e. that you'd hold it) for a certain length of time or otherwise preventing you from terminating him in this situation, you don't have to hold his position at all: if there is no contract, he is an employee at will, and an employee at will may be terminated at any time, for any reason, including for being arrested. (The law does not require employers to keep employees who are arrested.) There is no obligation in the law to put him on leave at all, for any time--you can immediately terminate him.
If there is a contract covering this situation, then you need to review the terms of the contract to see what you can do, when.

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