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Will my husband be fired for this?
March 11, 2014 4:52 PM   Subscribe

Help! My husband is in deep trouble at work for meeting with me on a recent business trip. Although he had the permission of his superiors to meet me, they are still going to hold an investigative hearing, which could result in his demotion, suspension, or even termination. He has offered to provide documentation proving that our meeting was not a flagrant attempt at violating company policy, but his superiors are not interested in seeing it. In spite of his long tenure, it isn't looking too good. What can we do?

My husband recently returned from a business trip to Macau, China. Prior to the trip, he asked the permission of several of his superiors (including his Division Chief) if it would be alright that I accompany him on the side, completely at our own expense, as we have friends in the area with whom I would visit. He was granted permission to do so, and we made our plans accordingly.

The company's only policy (in the employee handbook) is verbatim as follows:

11. Employees on in-state or out-of-state work assignments away from their normal workstation must:
(a) Not be accompanied or joined by a relative or friend at any point in time during the course of a work assignment, unless they receive prior approval of the Division Chief."

Unfortunately, my hubby did not receive the approval from his superiors in writing. All agreements made were done verbally.

Upon my arrival (at a separate time, on a separate flight that we ourselves paid for), I was informed that our friends had a sudden and unexpected family medical emergency. Consequently, they would be unable to accommodate me until the following week. Clearly, this placed us in a very awkward position. We sought out alternate hotel accommodations immediately. What few vacancies we found were prohibitively expensive or in unsafe areas, and our situation became increasingly dire. Ultimately, I was forced to stay with my hubby that weekend at the hotel his employer put him up in.

In the spirit of full disclosure and transparency, my hubby immediately brought the matter to the attention of his superiors. He understands the policies in place (mentioned above) and dutifully cited them in his correspondence with his superiors.

It was at this time that my hubby was informed that he would have to make immediate alternate arrangements for me. The verbal agreement granting permission for me to be there had been completely disregarded.

Fortunately, a family friend, "Mrs. T." came through for us. She owns an apartment on Peng Chau island, not far from Hong Kong. My hubby contacted Ms. T in hopes that I would be able to stay at her apartment. By that evening, we received a positive response from Ms. T, the arrangements were made, and I departed the following day. The following week I went to visit our friends in Hong Kong. No one mentioned anything further about the matter from that point forward, and we considered it to be resolved and closed.

Upon returning to work yesterday, my hubby was brought into a private meeting with his superiors, in which he was interrogated regarding the matter. During the course of the meeting, he was met with considerable skepticism. My hubby then offered to supply the proper documentation in his defense, and he was told that they did not need it.

In nearly thirteen years of working for his current employer, my husband's loyalty to his work, to his superiors, and to the company has been exceptional. It is not a habit of his to break rules or to "rock the boat", so to speak. Given his excellent record, we find ourselves rather mystified at the harshness and lack of confidence that he is currently facing. He did not enter into this flagrantly or to violate rules.

The whole situation is compounded by the fact that my hubby is the sole wage earner in our household. With that in mind, it is imperative to me that the quality and integrity of his work in the Far East continued unabated. My presence was invisible.

Now my hubby has been informed that there will be an investigative hearing later this week. It is possible that he could face a demotion, suspension, or termination. The whole thing has snowballed out of control.

It is rather curious to us as to why my hubby was given permission for me to accompany him only to have that permission revoked when he was being completely forthright and honest in his actions. It is also curious that the supporting documentation he has willingly offered is being ignored. We have also offered to submit statements of support from our friends who took me in, but have also been told that it won't be necessary.

What happens in cases like this? Is it likely that he could be fired over this? What recourse does he have in this situation? Is there something I should do or should I just keep out of it? Bonus points if anyone in HR or internal affairs has any insight that would prove useful. This is really a big deal and suffice to say we are both pretty scared right now.
posted by anonymous to Work & Money (38 answers total) 11 users marked this as a favorite
 
I have never heard of a company that disallows spousal travel that is not done at the company's expense and does not interfere with the work being done. I have thought for a while about why any company would do that, and I can't come up with any reason. If you staying with your husband for one day resulted in your husband's company paying a bit more for the room, the only reasonable position your company has is to ask your husband to reimburse the company for the small extra cost.

Your husband's employer is acting bizarrely. I mean that in the sense of truly outside social norms. As a result, I think your husband should look for a new job, even if he is not fired. If he is fired, he should look for unemployment, since I can't imagine the claim being denied.

You seem to think you did something wrong. You didn't. Your husband's company is wrong.
posted by saeculorum at 5:00 PM on March 11 [68 favorites]


Could he be fired? Assuming you're in the US in an at-will state, yes they can fire him for any reason that's not discriminatory.

What he should be doing is immediately getting his resume together and looking for a new job, and possibly you should be looking at ways to supplement your income in the meantime.

That said, this is really bizarre. I agree with saeculorum that it's not uncommon for spouses to come along on business trips so that they can spend time together during off-hours. Sharing a hotel room is also not uncommon. My fiance has invited me on business trips before, and my mom used to go on trips with my dad sometimes. It's bizarre to me that there is even a company policy about it. I mean, I've read plenty of AskMe's along the lines of "I'm going to X city with my spouse on their business trip and will have 3 days to myself, what do you recommend?"

My guess is that something else is going on here. The higher-ups for whatever reason have it out for your husband and are using this as a way to take it out on him.
posted by radioamy at 5:09 PM on March 11 [22 favorites]


This is weird. Your husband should get an employment lawyer.

Not because the company is necessarily doing anything unlawful, but because involving a lawyer might make it less likely for them to fire him, and if they do fire him, if there are any irregularities about it, you'll be on top of it from the very start.
posted by MoonOrb at 5:11 PM on March 11 [34 favorites]


This is a shot in the dark, but: Is it possible that, erroneously or not, the employer considers the incident a compliance issue for tax purposes?
posted by gnomeloaf at 5:14 PM on March 11 [1 favorite]


Looking at this from the other side, the family emergency that forced you to stay with your husband could make this look like the two of you planned to do this, and you may have been distracting him from the task he was sent to China to accomplish.

However, any decent manager would just shrug and say, "Make sure this doesn't happen again, dude." Nth'ing "Lawyer up immediately" and start polishing up the resume, because this is likely an excuse.

(On preview, at least ask the mods to anonymize this question.)
posted by Etrigan at 5:14 PM on March 11 [5 favorites]


So yeah, like everyone else said, if you're in the US they can fire him for whatever if he's not on a contract. You should keep out of it, and your husband should get a lawyer.

But let me add to the chorus that this is one of the most bizarre corporate polices I have ever heard of. I just...whoa. I'd get out if I were your husband. It's not worth putting up with this kind of stuff, honestly.
posted by goodbyewaffles at 5:17 PM on March 11 [2 favorites]


Going to a lawyer to try to preserve your husband's employment is silly. Nevada is an at-will state. Your husband's employer doesn't need any reason to fire him. "I don't like the style of pants he wears" is an acceptable reason for your husband's employer to fire him. Even if there's discrimination based on a protected category (age, race, gender, religion, etc) going on here, proving it will almost definitely be impossible. Further, if there's even the hint that your husband is trying to engage in litigation against his employer, your husband will no longer be employable by any other company. Companies don't like hiring people that will sue them. The law here is irrelevant because employment law is not self-enforcing.

If your husband's employer doesn't want him working there, they will find a way to make him not work there any more. This may be that hint. Regardless of what's going on, find a new job. Using a lawyer to keep a job that isn't worth keeping is to no one's benefit.
posted by saeculorum at 5:17 PM on March 11 [6 favorites]


Ultimately, I was forced to stay with my hubby that weekend at the hotel his employer put him up in.

This is what is causing the problem for him and it would contravene my employer's policy as well. My company's policy has nothing against spouses traveling with employees right up to the point where the company is paying for anything at all to do with the spouse. This includes putting them up in a hotel room even if there is no extra charge for an additional adult (this situation is specifically spelled out in the employee manual as it has caused problems before).

I'm not saying it's a just policy or a good policy or anything of the sort but it is what it is. We wouldn't shitcan someone for a first offense unless it was flagrant or severe.

On preview: Etrigan also has a point: from the POV of a cynical asshole boss, this could look like a well-planned BS story.
posted by Sternmeyer at 5:17 PM on March 11 [2 favorites]


11. Employees on in-state or out-of-state work assignments away from their normal workstation must:
(a) Not be accompanied or joined by a relative or friend at any point in time during the course of a work assignment, unless they receive prior approval of the Division Chief."


Could this be interpreted to mean while he's actually working - actively working on something - not applicable to downtime? Not sure if I'm explaining it correctly, but could it be interpreted as "while employee is meeting with clients (or similar), they are not to be accompanied by a friend or relative"? Or does it mean at all times while on assignment cuz, what!? How can an employer have control over someone who does not work for them (you)?
posted by Sassyfras at 5:18 PM on March 11 [2 favorites]


Can he ask the superior who verbally ok'd your being allowed to tag along to intervene on his behalf or write a memo saying that it had been ok'd?

It seems suspicious that they'd make such a big stink about it given your husband's 13 years with the company. Of course, it's entirely possible that they've been wanting to get rid of him and this situation has finally given them the opportunity. It's rotten, but possible.
posted by quince at 5:32 PM on March 11 [8 favorites]


You need to get a lawyer that handles employment issues before his hearing. That's your only good next move if you don't want to give this company all the control.
posted by planetesimal at 5:43 PM on March 11


It kind of sounds to me as if whoever gave the verbal ok wasn't supposed to give it, and is trying to cover his ass by saying it didn't happen, and scapegoating your husband.

Not sure where that leaves you. The whole thing is very odd.
posted by fingersandtoes at 5:45 PM on March 11 [8 favorites]


To me this sounds like someone was looking for a pretense to fire him, and they think they've found it. Either that, or your husband's superiors are gutless and/or jerks. Either way, it sounds like looking for other work would be in order.

As for it being pointless to contact an attorney because Nevada is an "at will" state, yes, trying to use a lawyer to keep this job is silly, but given how quickly this employment relationship seems to have deteriorated, I'd want to guard against other issues, like legal action on the employers part, including contesting unemployment claims, etc.
posted by Good Brain at 5:46 PM on March 11 [12 favorites]


How long were you at your husband's hotel before he contacted his superiors? A few hours, overnight,,,?

All I can think of is that perhaps when he originally asked permission, his Division Chief was very clear that you were not to stay with him. If he had you in the hotel overnight before he told them, that might be considered a breach of trust.

Stlll seems over the top, of course, but I'm wondering if we're missing some key information here.
posted by Salamander at 7:00 PM on March 11


I have worked for a multinational where written permission was needed for almost everything, and yet verbal permission was still sought by many employees. Although verbal permission was granted, it usually resulted in the employee being fired on return, as the managers had no CYA paperwork. That was the indication to me that it was a very bad company to work for.
posted by scruss at 7:32 PM on March 11 [1 favorite]


I think your husband was just set up by this person who "okayed" the trip.
posted by These Birds of a Feather at 7:33 PM on March 11 [13 favorites]


The immediate manager is angry because from his position it looks like your husband lied to him.

Casinos are notorious for being very strict about employee codes. If he was a dealer who screwed up like this, he'd be fired already. The fact that your husband is still around means he is probably not going to be fired, they are just trying to scare him into never making the same mistake again.
posted by BabeTheBlueOX at 7:40 PM on March 11 [1 favorite]


It's a ridiculous policy, but your husband made two major mistakes. First, not getting permission in writing. Second, informing his superiors of the change of plans in writing (or at all), which forced someone back home to escalate the issue so as to cover their own ass. Then, when inquiries were made, whoever granted permission in the first place probably just said, "yeah, I told him it would be okay if his wife came along, on the condition that she wasn't staying in the company hotel during the business portion of the trip." Now they have to discipline your husband to avoid this coming back on them. Just a guess.

At this point, all he can do is be totally honest and forthright, and hope that they see reason. But unless your husband works for Area 51, this is a ridiculous policy, and a ridiculous company, staffed by venal, ass-covering cowards. He should start looking for work somewhere that treats people like human beings.
posted by Dasein at 7:59 PM on March 11 [14 favorites]


I agree with those who said to just be forthright and explain. I know the prospect of becoming unemployed totally sucks and is scary, but... think of it this way. At least now your husband doesn't have to work with a company that treats its' employees awfully. It's a blessing in disguise, in a way.

Last year, I worked for a company (retail) that didn't exactly treat its' employees that well at times. When I left, I truly felt like a burden was removed off my shoulders.

Just saying. But, yeah, do fight this. Just be prepared for the worst, and begin job-searching, in case.

Good luck!
posted by dubious_dude at 8:13 PM on March 11 [2 favorites]


Why does your husband even want to work for a company with such draconian policies and no capability to treat him like a human being? Seriously, the problem is the company, not you or your husband. They are treating you like schoolchildren. This whole scenario sounds like something out of a movie.
posted by Dansaman at 8:38 PM on March 11 [4 favorites]


I work in a large organisation that has this kind of policy (although nowhere near as Draconian) and I'm with Daesin.

If this had stayed between your husband and the manager(s) who verbally gave him the OK everything would be fine, probably. This is speculation, but what I can see having happened is when you both (honestly and in the best of faith!) did the 'right' thing and alerted the company that you were staying in the hotel due to an emergency, this will have somehow got out to a colleague, or maybe even a manger or managers higher up.

That person or persons is/are now probably making it an issue for the manager(s) who said 'yes'... and that first manager is probably having to cover his ass. The ass-coverer has shown his true colours by lying about giving permission. Proceed with caution.

If I were your husband I would try and remember as much as possible about the initial conversation (date; place; topics covered) and document that. That will make him much more credible if it is his word against his managers. I'd also suggest he prepare a short written statement about the emergency nature of your stay and his demonstration of good faith in letting the company know what was happening.

Also, some points to clarify: the policy, if you have quoted it accurately says ‘permission’ and doesn’t specify written permission. If he received verbal permission and documented that somewhere (he did make a note somewhere didn’t he? Didn’t he?) then he has followed the company policy and should fight to have that recognised.

Also, again assuming you have quoted the policy verbatim, did he ask permission specifically of the Division Chief? If yes, again, fight to have this recognised.

Regarding your offer of statements of support, I wouldn’t wait for permission to provide something, but I wouldn’t necessarily provide statements of support. I would instead write a summary politely and unemotionally putting the facts forward (had permission, followed company policy, these were the circumstances permission was given in, acted in good faith in an emergency situation and able to provide statements that corroborate this version of events). I would perhaps finish up with a closer stating his commitment to the company and to working through whatever process they put in place to resolve the matter.

Does he have a union or employee rep he can ask to be at the meeting with him?

I'm so sorry, this sounds awful and so so stressful. It's easy for everyone to be all "you're better off out of there" and, in the long term, he probably is. Short term, no doubt like everyone else, you have bills to pay.
posted by t0astie at 8:57 PM on March 11 [3 favorites]


Oh, one more thing, where I work this sort of policy is in place for insurance and safety reasons. If, hypothetically there is a disaster and the hotel your husband is staying at is, say, struck by lightning while you are staying there with him, it creates all sorts of liability issues. If there aren't policies in place to mitigate this risk the organisation's insurance premiums skyrocket. And, obviously, if something happens and no-one knows a spouse is there they can't be assisted.

Emergencies and disasters during overseas travel aren't rare. When there are hundreds of staff travelling overseas it is really really difficult to make sure everyone is safe and adequately insured and so it becomes super important for the company to know who is travelling with who at all times.

The ridiculous bit is that you guys did the right thing by letting the company know your whereabouts - and are now being penalised for it.
posted by t0astie at 9:04 PM on March 11 [1 favorite]


I have definitely heard of policies like this before and used to work for a company that had a policy like this in the manual, even though it wasn't enforced. It doesn't sound like you're pursuing this line of defense, but just be aware that this is not as uncommon as some in the thread have presumed and definitely isn't considered draconian or outside the bounds of social norms in many companies.

My understanding is that there were a couple of reasons for the policy at my previous company:

1) Like Sternmeyer said, the company didn't want to pay for any part of the spouse's trip, even if it didn't cost them anything extra. This was partly because there's no guarantee it's never going to end up costing them more with some surprise double occupancy fee or even minibar charges and they just wanted to avoid even having to think about potentially sorting that stuff out for reimbursement and tax purposes.

2) They also didn't want to do this because it opens them up to liability issues if they're paying for your accommodation or part of your trip and something happens. As unlikely as that is, they have insurance policies to cover employees and don't have any protections if a spouse decided to sue for some reason.

3) The purpose of the trip is business and they wanted the employees to be focused solely on the business. The reality is that most business trips and conferences don't end at 5 pm. There is lots of networking and conversation that happens over meals and after hours and they wanted the employee to be available for that to build relationships beneficial to the business, not going off to meet their spouse for a sightseeing tour.

I share those reasons so that your husband can maybe be aware of what they're trying to avoid with a policy like this and can make it clear that he understands their perspective and that none of these things were an issue during your time there.

However, even though a policy like this isn't uncommon, they're handling this minor violation in a pretty crappy way that does reveal something about the company and their loyalty to policy and procedures and CYA, rather than to people.
posted by Colonel_Chappy at 9:13 PM on March 11 [4 favorites]


Employee handbooks are merely a giant collection of impossibly inconsistent and arbitrary rules having little to do with 'how things are done in real life'. The reason they exist is so that dirt is easy to come by when needed by HR...so, this infraction is a proxy for whatever-is-really-going-on. So, mystery.

I think a job search is prudent.
posted by j_curiouser at 10:29 PM on March 11


Although he had the permission of his superiors to meet me, they are still going to hold an investigative hearing

Echoing that this whole situation is bizarre and troubling. Given the above statement, it sounds to me like he's been fitted up for a firing, I'm afraid. Your husband works for some nasty people. Lawyer: perhaps. Job hunt: definitely.
posted by Decani at 10:48 PM on March 11


FWIW: My current company encourages people to bring their spouse along when they travel for business. It is clear that the company won't pay anything extra for this, but that it makes the travel more enjoyable for both the employee and the spouse.

My previous employer (eBay) actively encouraged spouses to travel with the employee. By "actively" I mean that they would actually pay the airfare of the spouse on international trips (>8hr flights) if both parties booked coach seats rather than a single business seat for the employee. The quick math here is that 2 coach seats are often significantly cheaper than 1 business seat. My wife and I went to Sweden this way - I worked for a week and then took a week's vacation after, all airfare was paid by the company, but we paid for all of her meals and of course our vacation.

Anyway, for the Nth time this is an unusual situation to be in this position at least compared to some mefite's experiences. I agree with a few of the thoughts above, including that the division head may be trying to cover their butt now that there is a written change of plans. That's a perverse incentive - that keeping quiet may have avoided trouble. That's not a situation I'd like to try to figure out and then have to adopt in order to protect my job. Hope it will all be ok, but also hope that your husband has the confidence and ability to do some job searching even if everything settles down.
posted by pkingdesign at 11:17 PM on March 11


When I hear "division chief" I think this may be governmental, perhaps law enforcement or intelligence related, and thus, perhaps some degree of "cover" is needed. Maybe it's a diplomatic thing, a safety thing, or simply required for the assignment.

Even if that's far fetched, I think it may be essential to know what line of work your husband is in before anyone can pass judgement on how draconian or unusual this might be... because if he's simply in sales or any other conventional work, yeah, it's not only weird, but it may break employment laws (your employer can't dictate what you're doing off duty, including who you fraternize with... this would be tantamount to slavery).
posted by Unsomnambulist at 1:22 AM on March 12 [2 favorites]


He's either being set up to be fired or he went wrong when he put what was up to that point a denyable verbal agreement in writing. Putting it in writing means nobody can now ignore it and his superiors are now covering their own backsides. Either way he should probably dust off his resume and start looking for a new job. And you should start to think about how you might supplement the family income if it comes to it.
posted by koahiatamadl at 1:24 AM on March 12


From the OP:
Hi MeFites, and thank you for your responses. Some clarifications based upon your comments:

1. We arrived back at the hotel around midnight, so I had to stay that night. The following morning at breakfast, we notified everyone involved, first thing.

2. The guy who approved my coming along is the one who is issuing the complaint against him. (Nice, huh?)

3. We know it's not an issue of compliance for tax issues because it's a purely internal issue.

We appreciate your understanding the bizarre nature of all this. As I am the one who accompanied him, I am being pretty hard on myself for all of this...
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 2:21 AM on March 12


My suspicion is that they want to fire him for a completely unrelated reason (avoid a lay off, avoid an unemployment insurance hike, who knows) and are capitalizing on this rule "violation."

I also think you should find an employment lawyer to tag along to the interview / hearing -- if for nothing else, to casually suggest a fun deposition of all your husband's superiors so everybody can talk about how all the people who gave him verbal permission are now being gigantic dickfaces. The prospect of dragging out depositions under oath may well chill whatever is going on behind the scenes -- because if he violated the rules, so did his superiors by giving permission they weren't authorized to give or failing to go all the way up their own chain of command.

He should also brush up his resume because he sounds like too good of a guy to be happy working for people who would prefer that he'd left his wife stranded in a divey hotel in a foreign country.
posted by mibo at 4:27 AM on March 12 [1 favorite]


Lawyer up - as people have said.

Re clarification, how do you know this?
3. We know it's not an issue of compliance for tax issues because it's a purely internal issue.


If it has to do with travel and hotels, it doesn't seem internal.

Maybe employer has a broad policy that covers anything that might even appear to be a gift - such as a spouse in hotel.

Any emails he has where your plans are discussed with division chief and division chief is discussing this as a known thing are helpful. Print them out, at home, now.

Good luck. Calm down . You have some work ahead of you and need to be steady.

Again -Lawyer! I am sure employer is talking with counsel.
posted by Lesser Shrew at 6:03 AM on March 12


He should start looking for another job. At this point why would he want to work for such scumbags?
posted by Reflective Views at 7:09 AM on March 12 [1 favorite]


The gaming industry is weird and compliance is really, really important.

That said, your husband should look for new employment, just because this sounds like it got WAY blown out of proportion and if the guy who okayed the trip and knew about it, is making this kind of BFD about one night in an emergency, it's a problem.
posted by Ruthless Bunny at 7:16 AM on March 12 [1 favorite]


The reality is that most business trips and conferences don't end at 5 pm. There is lots of networking and conversation that happens over meals and after hours and they wanted the employee to be available for that to build relationships beneficial to the business, not going off to meet their spouse for a sightseeing tour.

Yeah, I think this is more likely to be it if they have that much of a draconian policy. They may also be concerned that it casts a bad light on the company - for example, that their employees are not really serious or do not take their work seriously or makes the work look more like a "playtime" conference.

I don't think they set him up, though. It seems much more likely that it came to upper management's attention and they said, "Hey, Division Chief, what's this? You said okay to this?" and he said "Oh, er, NO, I would never do such a bad-management thing! I will discipline him right away!"

That said, they may still want to fire him, because no way would he be a productive employee after being boned like that.
posted by corb at 8:23 AM on March 12 [2 favorites]


I'm going to second all of this:

1. If I were your husband I would try and remember as much as possible about the initial conversation (date; place; topics covered) and document that. That will make him much more credible if it is his word against his managers. I'd also suggest he prepare a short written statement about the emergency nature of your stay and his demonstration of good faith in letting the company know what was happening.

2. Also, some points to clarify: the policy, if you have quoted it accurately says ‘permission’ and doesn’t specify written permission. If he received verbal permission and documented that somewhere (he did make a note somewhere didn’t he? Didn’t he?) then he has followed the company policy and should fight to have that recognised.

3. Also, again assuming you have quoted the policy verbatim, did he ask permission specifically of the Division Chief? If yes, again, fight to have this recognised.

4. Regarding your offer of statements of support, I wouldn’t wait for permission to provide something, but I wouldn’t necessarily provide statements of support. I would instead write a summary politely and unemotionally putting the facts forward (had permission, followed company policy, these were the circumstances permission was given in, acted in good faith in an emergency situation and able to provide statements that corroborate this version of events). I would perhaps finish up with a closer stating his commitment to the company and to working through whatever process they put in place to resolve the matter.

In other words, go on the offensive in terms of providing statements, evidence, etc. Be clear about what the rules are and how he adhered to them. Don't argue that the rules are wrong, Draconian, etc. Just treat them as if they're carved in stone and explain how everything you did was in furtherance of complying with them to the best of your abilities.
posted by Capri at 9:28 AM on March 12 [1 favorite]


Another reason why the company might want this policy is if the employees have any influence over their travel assignments, it avoids the appearance that an employee set up a meeting or conference as an excuse to get the company to pay for a personal trip.
posted by grouse at 9:41 AM on March 12 [1 favorite]


Sometimes there are rules that, if you break them, give your employer the right to fire you "for cause" even if it's absurd. Sometimes employers want to get rid of people for any number of reasons -- too old, too expensive, want fresh meat, political, whatever. The rules are just the mechanics of doing what they wanted to do anyway.

Even if you get an employment lawyer, he might be fired for another reason down the road.

The only way to stay protected is to stay viable and always keep a fresh resume, and have the next job on deck. That's the way I (cynically) see the situation. Prepare for the worst. In a big company, your husband has little to no power. They're the enemy right now. Do what you need to do to get the most $$ and opportunities out of it. Lawyer up at least for a consult.
posted by htid at 9:41 AM on March 12


corb: I don't think they set him up, though. It seems much more likely that it came to upper management's attention and they said, "Hey, Division Chief, what's this? You said okay to this?" and he said "Oh, er, NO, I would never do such a bad-management thing! I will discipline him right away!"

This is my feeling as well.

If your husband fights this and wins, then the manager who gave the approval will probably be in HUGE trouble, because he apparently broke the rules and then lied about it. So he is probably going to fight tooth and nail to keep *his* job. If that manager does not get fired, and your husband has to continue to work with him, he should definitely look for another job. This relationship is now poisoned.

If the manager in question does get fired ... it all depends. Without knowing more, it seems that it will be very hard to win this one. Even if he wins on paper, he may find that he is more comfortable moving on to another company.
posted by bunderful at 4:30 PM on March 12 [3 favorites]


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