Is it unfair treatment or discrimination to disallow a manager to step down when the position is too stressful?

UPDATED: Feb 21, 2012

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Is it unfair treatment or discrimination to disallow a manager to step down when the position is too stressful?

I have asked several times to step down from front end manager to bookkeeper but the store manager and district manager would not allow me to. Now I have the HR manager talking to me about not performing my job correctly and laying me off because of it. I even applied for bookkeeping positions on the job board trying to step down from the stressful Management position I currently have. I feel as if I am being unjustly mistreated, and wondering if they can treat their management employees that way?

Asked on February 21, 2012 under Employment Labor Law, South Carolina


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

There is no law against making jobs stressful, requiring employees, including managers, to do stressful jobs, or against laying off or terminating employees who do not do their difficult or stressful jobs correctly. Also, it the employer, not the employee, who determines an employee's job title, position, and responsibilities, and an employer is not obligated to let a manager step down to a lower-level position. Therefore, from what you write, you employer may refuse to allow to you to "step down," can judge you by your performance in your current job, and could terminate you for performance issues.

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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