What is a legitimate reason for being fired from a job?

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What is a legitimate reason for being fired from a job?

My husband while grabbing a grease gun from his truck to take care of his machine decided to start up his vehicle and get the air running (it was 100 degrees out that day) about 15 minutes before he was off the clock and the foreman decided to fire him on the spot. This was his second day of work, for a union company. Is this legal?

Asked on July 21, 2011 Minnesota

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

You say it was a union company. Then the key issues are:

1) Was your husband a member of the union and/or covered by a union agreement, given his position and number of days on the job?

2) If so, what does the union agreement say about termination and discipline?

The reason that this is important is that in the absence of an employment contract or a union agreement, employees are employees are will: they may be fired at any time, for any reason. So unless there is an employment contract or union agreement to the contrary, your husband may, unfortunately, be fired as you describe. If there is a contract or union agreement, then its terms in regards to grounds and procedures for termination must be followed. Your husband should speak with a union representative, so see what the contract says and how it applies to him.


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