Can I take any actionagainst an employer gor giving me a final written warning without any previous warnings?

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Can I take any actionagainst an employer gor giving me a final written warning without any previous warnings?

I unknowingly violated the buying guidelines at my retail job. I have no previous offenses of this matte and I had never been talked to about this. I just was told that I violated them and was given a final warning corrective action. The way my retail does things is usually a coaching, a corrective and then after the third warning you are put on a final. Can I take any action against my employer for not following company policy and putting me on a final without any verbal or documented warnings. The offense can lead up to a termination but I had never done this before and no warnings given.

Asked on February 9, 2012 under Employment Labor Law, California

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

If you have an employment contract setting out the disciplinary policy, that is enforceable and you would have rights under it. Even if you don't have a formal contract, if there is a very strong policy manual or handbook, which does not contain limitations on its enforceability, that could be held to form an implied contract. However, if there is a policy manual or handbook, and it says anything like--

"Notwithstanding anything in this manual to the contrary, all employment is employment at will"

"This manual does not constitute a contract of employment"

"Policies may be changed at will"

--then it does not form an enforceable contract.

In the absence of an enforcable contract, your company's policies or guidelines are voluntary. That means that they choose to not follow them, and could go directly to a final written warning.


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