Thank you for the information and your question and I am sorry to read about your situation. Please see the answers to your questions below.1. Do I have any recourse?
In SC absent a contract
or written company policy
to the contrary, an employer has the right to set and change the terms of conditions of employment as they deem appropriate. That includes working hours and days and they can mandate as many hours as they choose too regardless of whether an employee is paid hourly or salary, with very few exceptions. The exceptions would not apply in your case unless you were under 18, a trucker, or in another safety sensitive job like a firefighter, police, etc. In addition, SC, like most states is an employment "at will" state. That means that an employer may terminate an employee for any, or no, reason and with no notice or warning unless the termination would violate an employment contract
, company policy, or employment discrimination law. So, unless your situation falls within one of these exceptions, your employer could terminate you, even for an arbitrary reason. 2. Am I still eligible to receive unemployment benefits from the state of South Carolina under these circumstances?
Unless an employee is terminated "without cause" they are ineligible for unemployment benefits. If you apply for benefits, which you should do, it is highly likely that your employer will dispute your eligibility saying you were terminated for "cause" for refusing to work when directed to. You would then be denied benefits. You can appeal that denial and upon denial the employer must prove that you intentionally or through gross negligence refused to work and that this is a reason he would terminate employees for. If he can carry his burden of proof
, then you will not receive UI benefits. If he doesn't show to the hearing or respond to the State when sent the inquiry, or carry his burden of proof, then you will awarded benefits.
Please let me know if you need any clarification. I would be glad to assist you further if I can.