My Options? Wrongfully terminated from cash job.

UPDATED: Sep 30, 2022

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My Options? Wrongfully terminated from cash job.

I had a job working for a business that is part of the BBB. They never did any paperwork or took personal information for tax purposes. They pay us in cash every Friday without removing taxes. I was told it was a 1099 type of deal. Well I was fired for no reason other then because of a situation that they just didn’t like. I told a fellow co-worked I did not need a ride from him because I was out of town. During this time I waited for another ride to see if they could pull through. When I found out I could not get a ride, I then informed my boss I could not make it. All of this was within an hours time, and I was fired because I told my co-worker I didn’t need a ride and probably couldn’t make it that day. They were not understanding the whole concept for some reason. So basically I was fired for no good reason, which I have the conversations saved via text messages that happened. I am unable to collect unemployment off this cash paying job. I would like to know what I can do as far as legal terms with this corrupt business. I am not the first person they have done this kind of thing to but I would like to be the last. I also would like to fight for unemployment rights as I was done wrong in an illegal manner by a business who operates illegally.

Asked on July 15, 2017 under Employment Labor Law, Pennsylvania


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

1) You were legally terminated from your job unless you were fired in violation of a currently still-in-effect written employment contract for a definite or defined term, like a one-year employment contract which has not yet expired. If fired in violation of a contract, you can sue for "breach of contract" for compensation. But without an in-effect written contract, you were an employee at will and could be terminated at any time, for any reason whatsoever, including that you couldn't "make it that day." Your employer does not need to be "understanding"--there is no legal obligation for them to understand your failure to get a ride to work.
2) Failing to show up for work is grounds for termination "for cause" whch would deny you unemployment regardless of how you were paid. You are not allowed to miss work without using paid time off (if you have any; there is no obligation for the employer to give you vacation days, etc.) for the absence; if you do miss work without using PTO, it is an unauthorized absence and you are therefore effectively "at fault" in being fired (you gave your employer good reason to fire you) and may not receive unemployment.

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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