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Tennessee Employment Law Questions & Answers
1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law for Tennessee on
Q: I was fired for asking my employer about my pay and the next day, he emailed me a termination letter. What can I do?

I asked my employer about my pay and the next day, I received a termination letter stating “due to lack of experience “ as the reasoning. I’ve NEVER been written up or received any verbal warning about “lack of experience” although employer knew before hiring me, that I didn’t have the... Read more »

Anthony M. Avery
Anthony M. Avery answered on Dec 2, 2021

Tennessee is a terminable at will State. Unless there is an employment contract, administrative law proceeding governing a government job, or some kind of employee handbook violation, the employer has total discretion in Tennessee.

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law and Education Law for Tennessee on
Q: Perm Sub - can my school change my position and contract at will?

I started in July working as a Permanent Sub teaching High School English with the intent that the school that hired me would help with my pursuit of certification. I was also told that after getting my certification I would get a raise and be instated as an HS ELA teacher full stop. My contract... Read more »

Jonathan William Doolan
Jonathan William Doolan answered on Oct 29, 2021

Your answer depends greatly on the wording of the employment contract between you and your employer. I would suggest that you schedule an appointment with a local attorney who practices employment law and they can provide a better opinion after reading your contract.

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law for Tennessee on
Q: Under overtime exemptions when does the managing two employees section kick in?

Under exempt employees salary laws. It says if you manage two or more employees you are exempt from overtime. I worked as a night manager at a quick-serve restaurant. Most nights I worked I would be with one employee but they would change out with other employees depending on the shift. Every so... Read more »

Rhiannon Herbert
Rhiannon Herbert answered on Sep 14, 2021

More information is needed here. Under the executive exemption, you are exempt from the overtime pay requirements of the FLSA if you manage at least 2 employees or their equivalent (among other requirements). This can be two full-time employees, or their "equivalent" (i.e. two part-time... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law and Business Law for Tennessee on
Q: My husband’s employer has been deducting ins. premiums out of his check every week since Nov. 2020 and not paying ins.

My husband has had almost $8500 deducted from his paycheck for insurance premiums that have not been paid by the employer. What recourse do we have? I feel we are owed that money back. Also, we’re getting bills now for medical services / doctors appointments that we assumed we had coverage for.... Read more »

Mr. James Charles Wright
Mr. James Charles Wright answered on Aug 16, 2021

Contact the employer to determine - if this is not resolved contact the department of labor.

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law and Employment Discrimination for Tennessee on
Q: Can I be fired for having an odor due to hoarding caused by a mental health issue?

My supervisors have had complaints and have spoken to me about this. I thought is was a body odor issue and changed all my personal hygiene items even laundry products, but then realized this after talking to a professional counselor. My company sent me home 2 days ago and have yet to let me know... Read more »

Carrie Dyer
Carrie Dyer answered on Jul 13, 2021

Generally speaking, while it might be unfair or unethical, it is not unlawful to terminate an employee due to complaints of body odor. More information is necessary to fully understand your situation. It does not sound like your employer is aware that a medical condition is causing the issue. You... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law, DUI / DWI and Employment Law for Tennessee on
Q: i was convicted of a class A misdemeanor (dui) in the state of Tennessee in the year 2019 can i still work at a daycare
Anthony M. Avery
Anthony M. Avery answered on Jun 28, 2021

To my knowledge a DUI Conviction does not affect such employment. If you have some sort of License, and there is a complaint, you might have to deal with that Regulatory Agency.. Tennessee is a Terminate At Will State anyway.

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Discrimination, Employment Law and Personal Injury for Tennessee on
Q: Let go refused to tell why, age 70 and less than a year work comp. Sep Slip- Lack of Work, Job posted next wk.

Do I have a case? I was in excellent health before injury and my age was not a problem. Injury had nothing to do with age, instead work station and vendor communication did. Before injury co-workers and local management had no idea of my age from appearance and job performance. Records were at... Read more »

Kyle Anderson
Kyle Anderson answered on Jun 9, 2021

Hi, more information is needed here. Were you injured on the job and filed a workers compensation claim? Some states have an anti-retaliation law that prohibits retaliation for filing a workers compensation claim. I would reach out to an employment law attorney in your state for a consultation.

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Discrimination, Employment Law and Personal Injury for Tennessee on
Q: Do I have a case for Age Discrimination and Retaliation?

Let go refused to tell why, age 70 and less than a year work comp claim, Separation Slip - Lack of Work, My Job posted the next week.

I was in excellent health before injury and my age was not a problem. Injury had nothing to do with age, instead work station and vendor communication did.... Read more »

Carrie Dyer
Carrie Dyer answered on Jun 8, 2021

More information is needed to analyze your situation. You may have a claim under the Americans with Disabilities Act, depending on the impact resulting from the injury you sustained. You could also have a claim under the Age Discrimination in Employment Act and/or a state law workers'... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law and Workers' Compensation for Tennessee on
Q: do I have a lawsuit?

my company has allowed an employee for years to be a tyrant among other employees without reprimanding her. Company policy states its zero tolerance to violence. With management taking the necessary steps they suppose to take I fell victim to this war path. she physically attacked and as result... Read more »

Jonathan William Doolan
Jonathan William Doolan answered on Jun 7, 2021

You have several claims, depending on the size of your employer, where the assault occurred, and the circumstances for your not being able to work. I would strongly suggest that you contact an attorney who handles workers' compensation and employment law cases. Generally they offer free... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law for Tennessee on
Q: Is it legal to work a salary employee 12 hours a day, 7 days a week with no overtime or bonuses?

My husband is a salary employee at a new company. He works 12 hour a days, 7 days a week and just yesterday his boss told them no excuses, you must come in everyday until it’s done. This weekend is a holiday weekend. His schedule is affecting our marriage and I’m tired of being a “single mom”

Carrie Dyer
Carrie Dyer answered on Jun 2, 2021

As long as he is properly classified as a salary-paid exempt employee, there is no limit on the number of hours per week his employer can require that he work. Unfortunately, your husband's best option would be to find a new job.

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law for Tennessee on
Q: How would I go about suing a temp agency or the place I worked at?

Not sure which one I'd have to sue, but I need to get something done. I wasted my time going in for 7 days (all 8 hours besides Sunday, which was 4) and only got paid for one day. $140.83

I made sure that I worked all week TWICE so that I COULD come in Sunday. The only reason I wanted... Read more »

Wayne M Bridgham
Wayne M Bridgham answered on Jun 1, 2021

This would be an unpaid wages claim. Tennessee does not have a wage protection act, like the federal government. However, Tennessee does generally require that all employees be paid for the hours they work. You would want to contact an attorney and discuss the particulars of your case for more... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Employment Law for Tennessee on
Q: Need an attorney for employer wage theft and not paying me minimum wage. I’m in Tn.

Stole for past 2 years.

Never turned into IRS or reported work to SSI.

STOLE ppp money. Never received checks for 2 months of my work.

Kyle Anderson
Kyle Anderson answered on May 26, 2021

Hello, more information is needed here. Were your hours deducted or how specifically were you a victim of wage theft? Were you paid hourly and worked more than 40 hours in a week? Employers are required to pay all employees in accordance with federal and state minimum wage and overtime laws. I... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law for Tennessee on
Q: Is it illegal to record a conversation between me and my employer without them knowing.

There have been several incidents where I have been wronged and my employer has said things that could prove this fact in private meetings. Can I record these meetings to protect myself?

Jonathan William Doolan
Jonathan William Doolan answered on May 24, 2021

Tennessee is a "one party consent" state, meaning that if you are both in Tennessee and at least one person (in this case, you) knows about and consents to the recording, it is legal. Whether it is beneficial depends on the facts of your case.

1 Answer | Asked in Contracts and Employment Law for Tennessee on
Q: A nanny agency introduced a nanny to me, but none of us have signed any contract with the agency. Can I hire directly?

I think the agency forgot to send me the contract that would not allow me to contact the nanny directly. Will they likely sue me if I just hire the nanny without paying them fees?

Mr. James Charles Wright
Mr. James Charles Wright answered on Apr 9, 2021

This is one of those - but is it the right thing to do -questions. You contacted an agency - they supplied a person and now you want to hire directly because they either forgot or trusted you as to being able to communicate information - I anticipate you likely know what the fee is as well. I... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law for Tennessee on
Q: Required to be on call 24/7. A 40 hour work is rare.

And each contact/phone call is billable for this “for profit agency” My ability to visit family is limited as company phone (ATT) does not work in my home town; however, other carries will.

Kyle Anderson
Kyle Anderson answered on Mar 10, 2021

Hi, more information is needed here. Are you paid for the time you actually spend on the phone? Is there a fixed amount of time that you are required to call back if you miss a call? There are many factors to determine whether on-call time is compensable. I would reach out to an employment law... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Discrimination and Employment Law for Tennessee on
Q: Got fired for gallbladder problems, causing me to passout at work.

I told my managers that i was going to the doctor and was waiting for a call to get an ultrasound. But i passed out several times at work over the weekend and i was slumped over in pain several times. Someone took a pict of me saying i was asleep for 30 mins. I wasnt, i was just in pain. HR called... Read more »

Jonathan William Doolan
Jonathan William Doolan answered on Mar 1, 2021

There are several issues that would need to be addressed to properly answer this question, including how many employees the company has and how long you worked there. I would suggest contacting an employment attorney in your area to see if they offer a free consultation.

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law for Tennessee on
Q: I worked in KY but live in TN & owner of business lives in TN. I was not paid. What state do I file complaint in?

I worked for a pharmacy in Ky and was not paid for hours worked or reimbursed for expenses like mileage and hotel bills that were agreed to be paid by owner. I live in TN and the owner lives in TN, but the business is incorporated. What state do I file a complaint in as far as small claims court?

Anthony M. Avery
Anthony M. Avery answered on Mar 1, 2021

Kentucky is the venue of the contract and its breach, so I would file there first. If successful, it will be a foreign judgment which must be used in TN to collect. If you file in General Sessions here, defendant will claim no jurisdiction.

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law and Employment Discrimination for Tennessee on
Q: I have a doc note but got fired due to no show
Kyle Anderson
Kyle Anderson answered on Feb 10, 2021

Hi more information is needed here. What did you miss work for? Were you sick or do you another medical issue? If you have a medical issue that qualifies as a disability under the Americans with Disabilities Act or a serious health condition under the FMLA, your absence may have been protected. I... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law for Tennessee on
Q: If i walk off a job and it is not completed as an LLC because owner keeps changing the scope of work can i be charged

The owner keeps adding work but doesnt want to pay for it.

Frank J. Steiner
Frank J. Steiner answered on Feb 3, 2021

When you agreed to the work did you have an invoice stating what you were going to do as a contractor? You should never do work unless the other party agrees to pay.

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Discrimination and Employment Law for Tennessee on
Q: Can a public or private employer require employees to get the COVID-19 vaccine?
Rhiannon Herbert
Rhiannon Herbert answered on Jan 13, 2021

Generally, the answer to this question is yes. However, if you have a medical condition that prohibits you from receiving the vaccine or if you have a religious objection to receiving the vaccine, you may be entitled to request an accommodation in the form of exemption from mandatory vaccination... Read more »

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