Missouri Termination (with Discharge) laws & HR compliance analysis

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

In Missouri, unless there is an agreement to the contrary, employment is “at will.” This 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, Missouri statutes and courts have changed the traditional doctrine to some degree.
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As a general rule, if a federal, state, or local law grants employees the right to engage in an activity or to enjoy a benefit, employees should never be disciplined, discharged, or otherwise retaliated against for requesting or attempting to do so.
To list a few key examples, state law prohibits employers from discharging employees for engaging in the following activities:
Abortion. Missouri law forbids the discipline or discharge of an employee for refusing to participate in the performance of an abortion (MO Rev. Stat. Sec. 188.105).
Garnishment. It is illegal to discharge or discipline an employee because his or her wages have been garnished to satisfy a single debt, and an employer may not discharge, discipline, or refuse to hire anyone because his or her wages have been garnished for support (MO Rev. Stat. Sec. 452.350 and Sec. 525.030).
Jury duty. Employers may not terminate, discipline, threaten, or take adverse actions against an employee because of his or her receipt of or response to a jury summons (MO Rev. Stat. Sec. 494.460).
Military duty. It is illegal in Missouri to fire an employee because he or she is a member of the organized militia or of the U.S. armed forces (MO Rev. Stat. Sec. 41.730).
Political activities. Missouri employers are forbidden from disciplining or discharging an employee for participating in ...

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