Can my employer deny my time off request for a federal court date?

UPDATED: Sep 30, 2022

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Can my employer deny my time off request for a federal court date?

I have federal court to finalize our bankruptcy and my employer stated they

were going to deny the request. I told them it’s for court and they said they

would see what they could do. I have heard nothing since and I have court

Monday the next day I work afternoon. Can they deny my time off for a couple

hours for court?

Asked on March 12, 2016 under Employment Labor Law, Alaska


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

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

Actually your employer can deny you time off in order to go to court. Absent a few states that require an employer to give employees time off for certain types of cases (e.g. domestic violence), your employer is within its legal rights to deny you such time. The fact is that most employment arrangements are what is known as "at will". This means that a company can set the conditons of employment much as it sees fit. So unless your treatment constitutes some form of actionable discrimination or violates a union agreement/employment contract, it is legal.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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