Is it legal for someone to be fired for being late without first receiving a verbal or written warning

UPDATED: Sep 30, 2022

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Is it legal for someone to be fired for being late without first receiving a verbal or written warning

My son was fired today from his job for being late to work. It happened only once before and the manager said that it was a mix up with the schedule. This time my son looked at the wrong day on his schedule. He immediately went to work was there within 15 minutes of the phone call. He was at work for almost a hour before the manager told him.

Asked on January 9, 2017 under Employment Labor Law, South Carolina


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

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

Unless this action violated the terms of an employment contract/union agreement or constituted some form of legally actionable discrimination/retaliation (which you did not indicate), then your son was an "at will" worker. This means that his company could set the conditions of his employment much as it saw fit. Bottom line, he could have been fired for any reason or nor reason at all, with or without notice.

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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