Can an employer ask for proof of death if I took a couple of unpaid days off to attend a funeral?

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Can an employer ask for proof of death if I took a couple of unpaid days off to attend a funeral?

My employer is requesting I provide proof of
death in order to keep my job.

Asked on October 22, 2019 under Employment Labor Law, New Jersey

Answers:

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

Answered 1 year ago | Contributor

Yes, your employer can ask for this if you used bereavement leave time to cover your absence. The fact is that this time can be abused by employees so requiring proof such as you have been asked for is perfectly reasonable. Further, unless you have an employment contract or union agreement to the contrary, you can be terminated if you fail to provide such proof. In fact, you can be fired for any reason or no reason at all, with or without notice. Bottom line, absent some form of legally actionable discrimination, a business has the right to set the terms of employment much as it sees fit.

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

Answered 1 year ago | Contributor

Yes, your employer can ask for this if you used bereavement leave time to cover your absence. The fact is that this time can be abused by employees so requiring proof such as you have been asked for is perfectly reasonable. Further, unless you have an employment contract or union agreement to the contrary, you can be terminated if you fail to provide such proof. In fact, you can be fired for any reason or no reason at all, with or without notice. Bottom line, absent some form of legally actionable discrimination, a business has the right to set the terms of employment much as it sees fit.


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