Advocating For California Employee Rights

Can you be fired for minor reasons?

On Behalf of | Mar 19, 2024 | Employment Law

Your job is important to you, so you may feel very frustrated if you get fired for what seems like a minor reason. Maybe you were just a few minutes late. Maybe your boss said they didn’t like your attire or your attitude. They told you to pack up your desk and go because you were being replaced.

But don’t they have to provide a better reason to fire you? The loss of a job takes away your entire income and can throw your life into disarray. Can your boss do that over something so minor? It feels unfair, but is it illegal? 

Do you have an employment contract?

If you have an employment contract, then you need to see if it says you can only be fired for cause. If so, then your boss does have to provide a reason. Your contract should stipulate what counts as a “for cause” firing. If your boss has fired you in violation of that contract, then it may be time to take legal action.

However, you may be an at-will employee, which means that you do not have a contract. If so, then the law doesn’t offer any protections in this regard. In fact, your boss doesn’t even need to have a reason to fire you at all. 

That said, even though your boss doesn’t necessarily have to provide a major reason to terminate your position, they can’t fire you for an illegal reason. For instance, it’s illegal to fire you based on your religion, race, age, pregnancy status or national origin. So even if the reason is minor, it does still have to be legal.

Do you believe that you were wrongfully terminated? If so, then it’s important to look into the legal steps you can take next.