Can my boss suspend me indefinitely for not agreeing to sit down with him and another employee to talk about why we are not getting along?

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Can my boss suspend me indefinitely for not agreeing to sit down with him and another employee to talk about why we are not getting along?

I called him and left a message, he hasn’t replied. The incident happened 2 weeks ago.

Asked on August 11, 2015 under Employment Labor Law, Texas

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

Yes, you boss can suspend you for this; he could even terminate you; and moreover, he could choose to terminate you "for cause" (for insubordination and/or failing to following employer instructions), which means you would be ineligible for unemployment compensation. You boss is your boss: he tells you what you have to do as part of your job, and so long as his instructions are not themselves illegal (e.g. he's not instructing you to commit fraud or steal), you have to do what he says. Unless you have a written employment contract--and most people do not--you are an "employee at will" and may be terminated at any time, for any reason, including a failure to follow your boss's instructions. (If you have an employment contract which limits suspension, discipline, etc., the employer needs to follow the terms of the contract in any disciplinary action it takes.)

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

Yes, you boss can suspend you for this; he could even terminate you; and moreover, he could choose to terminate you "for cause" (for insubordination and/or failing to following employer instructions), which means you would be ineligible for unemployment compensation. You boss is your boss: he tells you what you have to do as part of your job, and so long as his instructions are not themselves illegal (e.g. he's not instructing you to commit fraud or steal), you have to do what he says. Unless you have a written employment contract--and most people do not--you are an "employee at will" and may be terminated at any time, for any reason, including a failure to follow your boss's instructions. (If you have an employment contract which limits suspension, discipline, etc., the employer needs to follow the terms of the contract in any disciplinary action it takes.)


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