Vomitting as a Cashier

I work at Walmart and was given the option to stay or
leave while I was vomitting at work. Their policy
specifically says if you are vomitting not to come to
work for two days so I left. They refused to approve
the absence and I am terminated. Is there anything I
can do?

Asked on September 10, 2016 under Employment Labor Law, Florida


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

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

Unless your absence was protected by the FMLA or you had sick days/PTO to cover your time out, your termination was legal. That is so long as your treatment did not constitute some form of legally actionable discrimination (which it does not appear to have) or this action violated the terms of a union agreement or employment contract. Otherwise, as an "at will" employee, your company was free to set the conditions of your employment much as it saw fit.

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

Unfortunately, if you did not have a written employment contract, you were an employee at will. An "employee at will" may be terminated at any time, for any reason whatsoever, including missing work for being sick (if you do not have and use sick days which you earned or accrued at work, that is--if you did have and used paid sick days but were fired for doing so, you would have been effectively denied compensation you were earned and could sue for that). Without using sick days, you can be terminated in the situation you describe and would not have any recourse.

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