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Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq., Attorney
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 111533
Experience:  20+ Years of Employment Law Experience
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I own a busy laundromat. I recently hired someone who is not

Customer Question

I own a busy laundromat. I recently hired someone who is not really capable of doing the job. She now states she was in the ER with back pain and cannot work for 4 days. States she has a doctors note but has not given it to me even though I asked for it. Can I fire her now or wait for doctors note? I was not happy with her performance even before she called out for 4 days. Also, a big part of the job is lifting heavy clothing out of machines. That is stated in our job description
Submitted: 7 months ago.
Category: Employment Law
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 7 months ago.
Thank you for your question. I look forward to working with you to provide you the information you are seeking for educational purposes only.
Employment is deemed at will, which means you can terminate her for no reason at all or for any reason not based only on her age/sex/disability/national origin and you would be fine. So, if she is not at work and is not permanently disabled in need of accommodation and you are terminating her for her performance before she ever called off of work, you can indeed terminate her for her performance even if she is out sick right now. Make sure you have good documentation about her poor performance in case she tries to complain, as it would then be your burden to prove that the reason for the termination was performance and no other reason.
Customer: replied 7 months ago.
As she was only employed for about a month I do not have documentation of her performance. We were planning to terminate her before she called out with back pain. Also if she has back issues this is not the job for her as it required heavy lifting as stated in our job description. Can I fire her now before she may want to return? Also, I have asked for the doctors note which she says she has but has not given to me. I want to fire her without any issues related to that I fired her because she was out with back pain. We are from Pennsylvania. Our handbook, which she signed off on, states we are an at will employer.
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 7 months ago.
Thank you for your reply.
Yes, you can terminate her now for no reason at all. She is indeed an at will employee and you should not fire her because she is out of work, you should fire her for no reason at all, which you can do as an at will employee.