What can I do if I got fired for something that other employees do on a regular basis?

UPDATED: Sep 30, 2022

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What can I do if I got fired for something that other employees do on a regular basis?

I was fired for taking a poster that was garbage; this goes on in the store all the time (there are cameras to prove it). My assistant manager constantly makes derogatory comments and, like a child, chose that day to go look at the camera to catch me taking the poster. I feel highly discriminated against, especially since it was my first offense. He also gave me a week off with no pay.

Asked on February 15, 2016 under Employment Labor Law, New York


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

Answered 7 years ago | Contributor

Do you have an employment contract or union agreement that provides you protection under the circumstances? Was your firing contrary to company policy? Did it constitute some form of actionable discrimination? If not, then your termination was legal. The fact is that not all employees need me treated the same or even farily. This is true unless their treatment is based on their inclusion in a "protected class". This means that they may not be treated differently based on their race, religion, age, disability or gender (and in some states sexual orientation). Othewise, in an "at will" employment arrangement, a compay can set the terms and conditions of the workplace much as it sees fit. And generally this means who they fire and why. Actually, an employee can be discharged for any reason or no reason at all (subject to the above exceptions).

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 AttorneyPages.com 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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