Can an employer force an employee to work out of state temporarily?

UPDATED: Jul 29, 2011

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Can an employer force an employee to work out of state temporarily?

Asked on July 29, 2011 Michigan


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

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

Obviously they can't physically force you. However they can request that you move and if you don't it could cost you your job. So unless you have an employment contract or union agreement that prohibits such a move, or a temporary re-location is against the company's own policy, or your move as to do with some form of workplace discrimination, your employer's action is perfectly permissible.

The fact is that in an employment relationship, an at-will employer can increase/decrease salary/hours, promote/demoted and generally impose whatever terms and conditions of employment that it deems necessary. This includes employee relocation. For your part, as an at-will employee you can choose to continue to work for your employer or not.

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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