Hawaii Termination (with Discharge): What you need to know

Hawaii is an “employment-at-will” state, which means that either the employer or the employee may end the employment relationship without giving either notice or a reason. However, while this is true in theory, Hawaii statutes and courts have changed the traditional doctrine to some degree.
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Even if there is no explicit employment agreement with an employee worker, certain actions and representations can bind the employer just as if there were a written contract signed by both parties. For example, an employee’s at-will employment can be contractually modified and qualified by statements in employee policy manuals or handbooks (Kinoshita v. Canadian Pacific Airlines, 724 P.2d 110 (Haw. 1986)).
Employers should be cautious about allowing anyone in the organization to make a promise of job security to an employee or applicant. If the promise can be seen as an inducement for an employee or prospective employee to give up something of value, by relocating, for instance, or by leaving a good job or turning down an attractive job offer, it may be considered a “contract.” A federal or state law, collective bargaining agreement, or individual employment contract may place further limitations on an otherwise employment-at-will relationship.
Bankruptcy. An employer may not fire a worker because he or she has filed for bankruptcy (HI Rev. Stat. Sec. 378.32).
Credit history. Employers may not discharge or otherwise discriminate against an employee based on the employee's credit history or credit report, unless the information in the credit history or credit report directly relates to a bona fide occupational qualification. Such a bona fide occupational qualification must be reasonably necessary to ...

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Hawaii Termination (with Discharge) Resources

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Record retention is complex and time consuming. However, in addition to complying with various federal and state laws, keeping good, well-organized records can be very helpful in documenting and supporting an organization’s employment actions.
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This special report will discuss how you can ensure your records are in good order, and establish a record-retention policy.

Topics covered:
1. Hiring Records
2. Employment Relationships
3. Termination Records
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6. Tips for Better Recordkeeping
7. A List of Legal Requirements

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