Can I fire an employee simply because he is incredibly annoying?

QUESTION:

This is a silly question, but I have to ask. The employee performs his job, but he’s driving me crazy. Can I fire this employee simply because he’s incredibly annoying? Quality of life must count for something. What if two people don’t get along. I’m the CEO. Shouldn’t I be able to decide who works for me?

ANSWER:

Charles Swan

Charles Swan

by Charles Swan at www.thevirtualcfo.net

The short answer in California is YES, since California is an “at will state.”

Hovever, get good legal advice before acting.  There is some good assistance available on this site.

Good luck!

ADDITIONAL ANSWER:

Ethan Stone

Ethan Stone

by Ethan Stone, Stone Business Law

This is right. The thing to bear in mind is that firing even an “at will” employee for certain reasons (e.g. race) is illegal. You’re not doing that, but that won’t necessarily prevent the employee from claiming that you were. There’s no complete safety from that, but you might want to take a look at my post here (http://www.foundersspace.com/team/how-do-i-go-about-firing-an-employee/) for some thoughts on how to be safer. As Chuck points out, it’s usually a good idea to get legal advice before you take any steps, since there may be circumstances you’re not taking into account.

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