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Fired unjustly from a Company for calling out due to a water leak in condo

Gardner, MA |

I was working for a retail company and I call out one morning due to the fact I had a water leak in my condo's ceiling and upper cabinets. My supervisor told me over the phone that If i couldn't make it into work that I'd be out of a job...I was fired because I had to stay until building maintenance arrived (which takes an hour) I was staying there catching the water so that it wouldn't cause any serious damage. my schedule for that day was to work 4 hours, and My building maintenance even said that If I went into work I'd have thousands of dollars worth of damage since my kitchen cabinets and living room furniture would have been destroyed if i wasn't there to react. Anything I can legally do to get some kind of financial hardship settlement from said employer??

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Attorney answers 4


You can file for unemployment. I am assuming that you are an at-will employee (with no employment contract). Your employer can legally terminate your employment at any time for any reason, even for no reason at all. There is no law stating that your employer should treat you fairly or consider your personal circumstances when making decisions. Based on what you've posted here, you would likely qualify for unemployment benefits.

This answer is provided for guidance only. DO NOT rely on it as legal advice. We DO NOT have an attorney-client relationship. You should contact an attorney in your area for a one-on-one consultation before pursuing any action or making any decisions.


Mass. is an "at will" employment state, which means you work at the will of the employer. You can be fired for no reason, or for any reason that is not illegal (like discrimination). Apply for unemployment and start searching for a new job.

Good luck.

Attorney Lauren Craig Redmond ~ 617.953.6116 ~ No attorney/client relationship is established or implied by any email or phone conversation.


Massachusetts is an "at will" employment jurisdiction. What this means is that an employer can fire you for any reason or no reason at all. Unless you have an employment contract or were terminated for belonging to a protected group (i.e. handicap, gender, race), you unfortunately have very little recourse against your former employer. I suggest you file for unemployment benefits while you look for a new job. If your employer contests your unemployment benefits, I suggest you consult with an attorney. Feel free to contact me if you have any questions. Good luck!


I agree with my colleagues. There is a difference between unfair and illegal. It seems your situation falls into the former category. So, you have no legal claim for wrongful discharge. But, you should be eligible for unemployment benefits since you were not fired for misconduct. For more information about unemployment benefits, go to the website for MA Department of Unemployment Assistance. Good luck.

This information should not be construed to be formal legal advice nor the formation of a lawyer/client relationship.