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Is there some sort of reliable source
to look at when viewing your rights as
an ‘at will’ employee? I think I’ve
been screwed over on multiple
occasions, but I am not sure what is

Asked on March 18, 2018 under Employment Labor Law, Missouri


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

There are many online sites (including this one) that can provide information about your rights as an "at will" employee. Generally, it helps to formulate the question precisely. That said, as a general matter: you have *no* rights as an at will employee.
Employment at will means not only can the employer terminate you at will--that is, at any time, for any reason whatsoever, including unfair or factually incorrect ones--but also:
1) The employer can change your job at any time: transfer or relocate you, change your shift or hours, change your duties or title, etc.
2) The employer can change any aspect of your compensation at will: change or reduce pay, how you are paid (salary vs. hourly), vacation and sick days or other PTO, etc.
3) Since you can be terminated at will, the employer can do anything less than that at will: demote you, suspend you, put you on probation or improvement plans, etc.
4) You can be required to sign a nondisclosure or noncomptetion, etc. agreement at any time, on pain of termination.
5) The employer may make you work as many hours as it likes, subject only to the obligation to pay hourly employees for all hours worked and to pay nonexempt staff overtime when they work more than 40 hours in a week.
6) The workplace can be unpleasant, supervisors can be belittled, demeaned, insulted, etc. at will, except that you cannot be harassed for a specifically protected characteristic, principally race, national origin, age 40 or over, sex, religion, or disability.

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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