Is it legal to fire someone through a text message?

I was sent a text message to turn in my uniform and pick up my final check.

Asked on October 26, 2011 under Employment Labor Law, California

Answers:

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

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

Unless firing an employee in such a way violates existing company policy or an employment contract or union agreement, it is perfectly to dismiss an employee via a text message. The fact is that in an "at will" employment relationship, an employer has a great deal of discretion in setting the terms and conditions of the workplace; this includes the means and manner in which an employee is discharged.

Note: In a situation in which the employment relationship ends because the employer terminates the employee, lays them off, or otherwise lets them go, the employee's final paycheck must be provided to them on their last day of work. If it does not timely pay, the employer is subject to various penalties.


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