If there is a state of emergency due to a winter storm, can a company firer a person for leaving early or not going into work?

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If there is a state of emergency due to a winter storm, can a company firer a person for leaving early or not going into work?

Asked on January 22, 2016 under Employment Labor Law, West Virginia

Answers:

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

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

Actully it can. While unfair it is the law. Unless your treatment constituted some form of actionable discrimation or you had a union agreement, employmment contract or company policy that did not allow for termination under these circumstances, it is perfectly permissable to be discharged for wanting to leave early or not going into work in a snowstorm. This is true even if a travel ban was issued and you could't legally be on the road. As an "at will employee" you can be terminated for this reason, any reason or no reason at all. The fact is that employers generally can set the terms and conditions of employment much as they see fit. This includes requiring employees to work during a declared state of emergency.


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