Is conflict of interest a legal reason for immediate termination? 2 Answers as of October 03, 2011

I was being paid to buy cartons of newports from different retailers not going over the legal limit of 5 per day. My job caught wind of it, loss prevention shows up one night question me. I tell them the truth because nothing I did was wrong or illegal. They say they are going to look into it. Then a week later, I was terminated. I have been with the company for going on three years and worked forty hours a week, every week. All was well on my way to becoming a manager. The company is a multi-million dollar company.

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Nancy Wallace, Attorney at Law
Nancy Wallace, Attorney at Law | Nancy Wallace
Yes, sadly, you can be terminated for nearly any reason. California is an "At Will" employment state. That means the employer can simply let you go for no reason at all. Of course, the employer cannot terminated based on national origin, religion, gender, race and those 'protected' areas. But for a reason like 'conflict of interest', that employer can decide they do not want an employee who has another job doing something they feel might overlap with their requirements. That said, that employer might be found to have to pay Unemployment Insurance, so go apply with the EDD for UI.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 10/3/2011
Rice & Co., LPA
Rice & Co., LPA | Kollin Rice
In Ohio, unless you have an employment contract that restricts termination, you are an "employee at will" and can be terminated for any reason or no reason, so long as it is not an illegal reason.From your question, I can't see how it would make any sense to terminate you, or even really be any conflict of interest, but nor do I see any legal prohibition against termination.Unless you make too much money from your other employment, you are probably eligible for unemployment based on being terminated without just cause, and you should probably consider pursuing an unemployment claim.
Answer Applies to: Ohio
Replied: 10/3/2011
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