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Is it considered as FRAUD? California

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  • Is it considered as FRAUD? California

    Hi,
    I have a co-worker who went to do her own things while she is on the clock. She got caught by the supervisor and being suspended for it. They claimed she had comitted Fraud for using the company time to run the errands. (45 minutes). They are also trying to terminate her by collecting other problems that seem no concrete evidence to me.

    My co-worker seems to believe that the reason they try to terminate her b/c of her work compensation issue. Also she defended that she used the company time to run errands but she also worked while she had clocked out. And she had worked while she was not on the clock many times. In a way this should balances out, according to her. (They supposed to clock in and out 30 minutes per day for lunch but in our line of work, walk in business can happen so...that's why she had to help the customer even though she already clocked out)

    I just want some advice to see if they are trying to do some funny business with her. They keep calling that she committed fraud by using the company time. I think it is such a harsh word to use. Any input helps. Thanks.

  • #2
    I believe California is an at-will state (someone correct me if this is one of the few exceptions). They can terminate her for any reason so long as the termination doesn't violate the law (no evidence required). Simply being late clocking in after lunch, or running errands is plenty of reason to fire her.

    The company may be harsh using the fraud word, but regardless, they can fire her for less and need not have proof.

    -Tim
    Busy B Realty - Honey Run Apiaries

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    • #3
      Yes it technically is fraud and a fireable offense. She can try to justify it all she likes but running personal errands while on the clock is fraud and most employers would fire her for it. If she isn't getting paid for all the time she does work there are remedies for that. Taking care of personal business while on the clock is not one of them.
      I post with the full knowledge and support of my employer, though the opinions rendered are my own and not necessarily representative of their position. In other words, I'm a free agent.

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      • #4
        The only state that is not at least nominally at-will is Montana, and even Montana recognizes the at-will doctrine in some situations.
        The above answer, whatever it is, assumes that no legally binding and enforceable contract or CBA says otherwise. If it does, then the terms of the contract or CBA apply.

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        • #5
          Moving to Montana soon gonna be a dental floss tycoon....

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