Can my husband be fired it he couldn’t get to work because of weather?

My husband worked for a warehouse through a placement agency for nearly 6 months. No benefits, no vacation or sick time. We got 12 inches of snow last Wednesday and lost power heat and water for the second time in 2 weeks. My husband texted his boss that we had 12 inches of snow and no power heat or water Thursday morning; he would not be in that day but he would be in on Friday. He received a phone call later Thursday saying his services were no longer required. Prior to that, he had been commended for being an excellent employee and I believe this was jealousy from his immediate supervisor. My husband says there’s nothing to be gained by arguing and he’ll just look for another job. Is he right or should we try to fight this?

Asked on November 13, 2012 under Employment Labor Law, New Jersey

Answers:

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

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

I feel for your situation but your husband may not have any recourse here. Unless this action violates his former employer's own company policy, is a form of actionable discrimination, or is prohibited by virtue of an employment/union agreement, then his discharge was perfectly permissable. In an at-will employment relationship, an employer can set the terms and conditions of employment much as it sees fit. This includes the discharge of employees for any reason or no reason at all.


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