Vermont Termination (with Discharge) laws & HR compliance analysis

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

Vermont is an “employment-at-will” state. Therefore, an employer may generally terminate an employment relationship at any time and for any reason. However, a federal or state law, collective bargaining agreement, or individual employment contract may place further limitations on an otherwise at-will employment relationship.
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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:
Family leave. Generally, an employee may not be fired for requesting or taking leave or the underlying condition requiring such leave under the Vermont Parental and Family Leave Act (21 V.S.A. Sec. 472).
An employee may not be fired for lodging a complaint or cooperating in an investigation of a violation of the Act (21 V.S.A. Sec. 473).
Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) tests and results. It is illegal for any employer to discriminate against an employee on the basis of a positive result from an HIV-related blood test. Employers may not require employees to submit to HIV-related blood tests as conditions of employment (21 V.S.A. Sec. 495).
Jury duty and witnesses. Employers may not retaliate against employees for serving on a jury or for serving as a witness in a trial or hearing pursuant to a summons (21 V.S.A. Sec. 499).
Leave to attend annual town hall meeting. Employers may not discharge or retaliate against employees who exercise their right to take ...

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