If I’m an outside sales rep who travels no more than 2 hours from home but am now being asked to do overnighters, can I be fired if I say no?

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If I’m an outside sales rep who travels no more than 2 hours from home but am now being asked to do overnighters, can I be fired if I say no?

I’m 67 and have been with the company for 33 years. All sales reps are being asked to do this.

Asked on April 3, 2012 under Employment Labor Law, Pennsylvania

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

Yes, you may be fired if you refuse to go on overnight trips. An employer is free to set--and to change--job duties or requirements. Your employer can therefore make it part of your job to do overnight trips, and if  you refuse, you would be failing to do your job and violating employer instructions--hence not only could you be fired, but you could be fired "for cause" and denied unemployment benefits.

If you had an employment contract specifying your duties, that would be different; such contracts are enforceable. But without an employment contract, it's up to your employer to determine your responsibilities and duties.


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