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JackJD
JackJD, Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 535
Experience:  I've been in practice 30+ years, concentrating on employment law for 15 years. I enjoy helping people.
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I was suspended pending further investigation. Although, they

Customer Question

I was suspended pending further investigation. Although, they are refusing to give me the exact violation/details for suspension, it relates to the following: I had an employee call in for personal issues all week long. It was posted on Facebook that she was going to a Birthday party at a local pub. I went to this pub, with several friends. When she walked in, I said hello, she said Oh shit! Called me a f**king bitch and I stated we can discuss this next week. I had spoken with my district Directors who knew I went. On Sunday, I e-mailed corporate HR to inform. I was suspended on Thursday. (I believe the suspension was delayed because there was no other nurse in the building).
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Employment Law
Expert:  JackJD replied 1 year ago.
Hello, my name is ***** ***** I'd like to help you. I have a few questions first.1. Are you employed by a public agency or a private company?2. When you say you were suspended, is it with pay or without pay?3. What is your specific question about your situation?If you post your response somewhat later than my post, please have patience, since I will be away from the website for a few hours.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
This is a private, national company that is for profit.
Without pay, but funds will be returned when reinstated.
My question is, I don't know what I did wrong. 3 days after my request of why I was suspended, I received a notice that it was behavior unbecoming, I have not received a response of what behavior and/or the accusations. It is well know my night shift staff are not "big fans" of me. (I am the 5th Health and Wellness Director in a 1 1/2 years. I have been there for ~ 8 months.
My question is, is it legal to not tell me what the accusations are so I can defend my self?
Is it legal to post pone suspension until there is nursing coverage?
There is no violation stated in the corrective action form and no detail of what the inappropriate behavior is, is this legal?
I have never had a corrective action in my 32 years of being employed, I am a RN.
Of note, My Executive Director just got, "spoken to", as a result of her management of her ten while she was on vacation…..I am the one that reported the issues.
Expert:  JackJD replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for the additional information.Unfortunately, I need to tell you that it is legal for the company to not tell you of the accusations while they are investigating. New York is an "employment at will" state. That is a legal doctrine that says that you can be fired for any reason, no reason, or a bad reason. Thus, what they chose to do or not do in the investigation is not controlled by law.There are two exceptions to this rule, that might apply to your situation. The exceptions would apply if the issues that you reported the ED for were related to either (1) medical quality and patient care or (2) involving the safety of yourself or other employees.If your report involved either of these subject areas, then you would be protected against retaliation by management for your reporting.New York has an exception to the employment-at-will rule called the "public policy" exception. Thus, if your report involved either patient safety and wellbeing or staff safety, then you were reporting about an issue that is covered by other laws in the state.This will not come into effect until/unless they fire or demote you as a result of their investigation. And, you will have to show that the reason that they give is a pretext and the real reason is your reporting of the issues.It will not be easy making a case in that regard. If you suspect that this is what is going on, I would suggest that you consult a lawyer specializing in employment law in your community. The best way to find a good lawyer is to go to the lawyer referral service of the local bar association. They will be pre-screened and listed by area of practice. Also, lawyers on this list will have committed to charging a nominal fee for an initial consultation. If you have a credible case, you should be able to find a lawyer who will take the case on contingency, that is, taking his/her fee out of the award.I'm sorry this is happening to you. As I said earlier, there is no legal support, unless we're talking about retaliation; even then it will be a tough case.If I have fully answered your question, please rate the answer with the buttons below.