If my daughter doesn’t move to be closer to work, can she be fired for this?

My daughter lives in one state and her boss has asked her to move to a neighboring state to be closer to work. Can she be fired if she doesn’t move?

Asked on November 2, 2011 under Employment Labor Law, Pennsylvania


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

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

As a general rule, an employer has a great deal of discretion in setting the terms and conditions of employment. This includes relocating to be closer to work. If an employee disagrees with this the employee is free to quit. However, if the employee doesn't move, their employer can terminate them (and without notice). This is called "at will" employment. 

As to your daughter's specific situation, does she have an union agreement or employment contract that would prohibit a forced relocation? Does this proposed move violate existing company policy? Is it the result of actionable discrimination? If so, she may have protection; if not I'm afraid that she must either make the move or face possible termination.

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