Have a general question about employment law? Want to share a story? I welcome all comments and questions. I can't give legal advice here about specific situations but will be glad to discuss general issues and try to point you in the right direction. If you need legal advice, contact an employment lawyer in your state. Remember, anything you post here will be seen publicly, and I will comment publicly on it. It will not be confidential. Govern yourself accordingly. If you want to communicate with me confidentially as Donna Ballman, Florida lawyer rather than as Donna Ballman, blogger, my firm's website is here.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

10 Workplace Rights You Think You Have -- But Don't (My Guest Blog Post on AOL Jobs)

This week I was a guest blogger on AOL Jobs. They must have liked my post since they've invited me to do more. Here's what it was about:

As an employment lawyer who has represented employees for 25 years, I find that everyone thinks they already know their rights. After years of watching shows like The Defenders, Fairly Legal and Damages, Americans have absorbed lots of legal information. Unfortunately, most of it is wrong. Before you mouth off to your boss about your rights, I thought I'd share with you the top 10 laws most employees think exist- that don't.

1. "I was wrongfully terminated."

Maybe if you lived in Montana you'd have a point. Montana is the only state in the nation with a law saying you can only be fired for just cause. Otherwise, you live in an at-will state. That means you can be fired for any reason or no reason at all. They don't have to have a good reason. They don't even have to give a reason in most states. Boss in a bad mood? He or she can fire you. HR didn't like the shoes you wore that day? Buh-bye.

Read the rest at AOL Jobs. Don't miss the comments. Lots of people shared war stories (including one guy who got fired because his employer didn't like his boots - and you think I make this stuff up).

By the way, Gina Misiroglu of Red Room put me in touch with the AOL people, which is one of the great ways she's bringing traffic to Red Room and getting attention for Red Room's authors. Thanks Gina!

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