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Patrick, Esq.
Patrick, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
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Experience:  Significant experience in all areas of employment law.
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Today, at work, my director presented me with a letter that

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Today, at work, my director presented me with a letter that had to sign or leave. It was a 30 day "improvement plan" or sorts. It had nothing in there about my actual work - I'm quite good at my job. Mostly, just complaints about how I interact with my Project Manger. It's all political nonsense. If I did not sign, I was terminated. He wanted me to not sign. I didn't want to sign because the letter was extremely one sided. There were references to conversations with no context, things that I had said that were only parts of the conversation that didn't explain what I said what I did. In short, unfair. I signed it. Now, I have 30 days to "improve" and I'm not sure what happens after that. This letter goes into my HR file, can I include additional information to provide more context so that I don't look so bad?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Employment Law
Expert:  Patrick, Esq. replied 1 year ago.

Hello and welcome. I am very sorry about this letter. You can absolutely offer a written rebuttal. However, your employer does not have a legal obligation to consider it or file it in your "personnel file." The reason boils down to the fact that employment is at will and as such can be terminated for virtually any reason regardless of what's fair or true. Since they don't need a good reason to let you go the law does not require them to even give you a write up. They could simply terminate you if they wanted. Therefore the law does not regulate write ups or require employers to consider rebuttals. Still, so long as your tone is not argumentative a rebuttal can help your employer see things from your side. Employers very rarely are "out to get" employees for no reason, so if you can engage in a meaningful dialogue with them that enlightens them to your point of view that can be helpful. That would be thpically be the extent of your recourse here, unfortunately.