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I was sent home from work today (pending investigation) due…

Customer Question
Hi there. I was...

Hi there. I was sent home from work today (pending investigation) due to someone stating I create a hostile work environment (fearing job). I've never threatened anyone. I am direct and honest and a strong manager. My team numbers speak for themselves. No specifics were given today. I was asked to meet with HR and our corporate attorney in the morning after investigations this afternoon. I just want to ensure I'm being treated fairly and it's not "hear say" or someone being "sensitive". Should I obtain an attorney? Also, this has come up before and I feel like the company has not supported me due to the fact that it was individuals being sensitive.

Lawyer's Assistant: Because employment law varies from place to place, can you tell me what state this is in?

Iowa

Lawyer's Assistant: Is the employment agreement "at will," union, full time or part time?

At will

Lawyer's Assistant: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?

I'm in a protective class. Over 50, gay, veteran and African American. Not that it matters, but I want to ensure I have my facts straight.

Submitted: 11 months ago.Category: Employment Law
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Answered in 6 minutes by:
9/14/2017
Employment Lawyer: Allen M., Esq., Employment Lawyer replied 11 months ago
Allen M., Esq.
Allen M., Esq., Employment Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 20,631
Experience: Employment/Labor Law Litigation
Verified

Thank you for trusting your question to JA today. I am a licensed attorney with over a decade of law practice and over 20 years of experience in the legal field. I’m happy to be of assistance.

I just want to clear up a few things about the legal terms you are using here.

Hearsay has no legal meaning here. An employer can consider hearsay all they like.

Referring to someone as sensitive is not advisable, as it demeans them. I totally understand your point, but the employer doesn't have to disregard the way a person feels simply because they are being sensitive.

Hostile work environment has two different meanings. It has the legal meaning, which is a situation where a person harasses based on race, religion, gender, age, disability or FMLA use. Then it has the meaning that employers and employees use, which is any situation where someone feels uncomfortable. Unfortunately, in an employment law situation, the employer can consider something "hostile" even when a court would not.

If your employment is "at will" the employer can legally terminate your employment without cause. if they decide on a cause, that cause doesn't have to be valid. That makes it very difficult for an attorney to be of any value at this point. The employer is going to do what they are going to do, and an attorney can't really influence them. In fact, in most situations, the employer will simply refuse to speak to your attorney at all.

The best option here is to wait and see what happens. Try to use the employer's system to figure out what was alleged. If it can be determined who made the allegations, that can greatly assist you in knowing how best to defend with your employer.

If you are terminated and you feel that there is an underlying motivation here of discrimination THEN would be the time to reach out to an attorney.

If you have any further questions or other facts that you would like me to consider, please let me know. I invite follow up questions, so use REPLY for those. If you have no further questions then good luck going forward and please do not forget to rate my service with a three, a four or preferably a five star rating so that I receive credit for working with you today. Please rate me based on my service and not on your satisfaction with the law, which I am not in control of and I am just reporting to you. Also, feel free to request me in the future, if you have questions concerning a different matter.

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Employment Lawyer: Allen M., Esq., Employment Lawyer replied 11 months ago

Hello, I wanted to check in and make sure that there was not any additional information that you required after the response I previously provided to you. If you need further assistance, please use REPLY and ask me for any additional information you may need. If not, take care and have a great day.

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DISCLAIMER: Answers from Experts on JustAnswer are not substitutes for the advice of an attorney. JustAnswer is a public forum and questions and responses are not private or confidential or protected by the attorney-client privilege. The Expert above is not your attorney, and the response above is not legal advice. You should not read this response to propose specific action or address specific circumstances, but only to give you a sense of general principles of law that might affect the situation you describe. Application of these general principles to particular circumstances must be done by a lawyer who has spoken with you in confidence, learned all relevant information, and explored various options. Before acting on these general principles, you should hire a lawyer licensed to practice law in the jurisdiction to which your question pertains.

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