I got into a disagreement yesterday with my supervisor at work, because I wouldnt take her verbal abuse. She then sent me home from work, without speaking to Human resources. I reported it to both H.R. and our Regional Manager. My H.R. asked what would I want them to do. It is now the weekend and I have no idea if I am allowed to work on Monday. What are my legal rights?
2 Answers from Attorneys
Unfortunately, unless the "abuse" is motivated by discrimination or retaliation (based on your being a member of protected class such as race, ethnic origin, disability, etc...) there are no legal rights. As you may know, an employer is not obligated to provide a workplace free of conflicts and issues, but only free of civil rights violations.
Not only are there no laws against poor management, 'unfair treatment', or rude and obnoxious behavior by management or other employees, but in general unless an employee is civil service, in a union, or has a written employment contract, they are an 'at will' employee that can be disciplined or terminated any time for any reason, with or without ‘cause’, explanation or notice. That is, UNLESS the conduct is based upon discrimination, harassment or retaliation as defined as actually ‘illegal’ under the ADA [disability], Civil Rights [age, race, sex, ethnic, religion, pregnancy, etc], FMLA [medical leave], Whistle-blower, or similar statutes. Any employee's goal should be to keep their supervisors happy and make them look good to the company, and make the company money. That’s how the company pays employee wages. If you don't, then don't be surprised to be replaced.
Now if the conduct was illegal under the above definitions, feel free to contact me for the legal help you’ll need.
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