Can employer say that he has terminated you 2 weeks after the fact?

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Can employer say that he has terminated you 2 weeks after the fact?

I work as a full-time employee for a consulting company. The company has sent me to work for a bank and the contract at the bank ended on a specific day over 2 weeks ago. The employer said he was working on getting a new project and last week when I asked him about the status of the new project, he said that I was terminated when my last assignment ended. So they kept me on hold and haven’t notified me or anything. They kept on saying that they are working on getting a few contract. Can an employer terminate you on a day that has passed 2 weeks ago? I received no termination letter at that time.

Asked on October 5, 2011 under Employment Labor Law, Virginia

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

As a practical matter, it depends on how you are paid and what benefits you get. If you get a regualrl salary, whether on a project or not, and/or receive some benefit, such as health insurance, it cannot be retroactively stopped--you would need to be paid your salary and receive your benefits up to the time you notified of termination. On the other hand, if you are an hourly employee without benefits--and did not get any hours after the project had ended--or are paid on project- or day-rate basis when you are working--and do not receive some continuing benefit, like health care--then they can say you were terminated two or so weeks ago; the reason is, in this case, it's no different than if you terminate you effective immediately, since in neither case were you owed any money or benefits for those two weeks. Saying you were terminated then vs. terminated now makes no difference in this case, since you received the same pay (none) in either case.


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