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What if I don't sign the termination papers?
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What if I don't sign the termination papers?

I was let go from a part time job I had for 4 years for something that was unfair...Even the employees there are on my side but anyway, can I not sign the papers? Would they withhold my last paycheck if I don't? Would not signing kind of be like saying "I quit"?


Legally, the majority of states do not require that you sign termination papers. Actually it is a myth that the employee signing with have any effect. If you are an at will employee (not under a union or employment written contract) the employer can terminate you for any or no reason (except discrimination see www.eeoc.gov) with or without your signature. Many at will employees nowadays are terminated via e-mail, a message on voice mail, or a letter sent to their home -- again no employee signature.

Under most states signing such an employment document only means that you saw it and received a copy. It does NOT mean that you agree with it. This is the same for reviews, discipline, or performance improvement plans. So, fighting over the signing is meaningless.

No, signing termination papers does not say that you quit. Signing a document that says "this employee hereby submits his/her resignation" is the only signing that would indicate that you quit.

Under the Federal law enforced by the Department of Labor. An employee must be paid for all time worked. So if you do not receive your last paycheck, you file a report with your state's Department of Labor. Most states have websites for this and allow online filing.

Look at www.eeoc.gov and your state's human rights commission/dept to see if you qualify for a discrimination suit. You may also want to speak with a local employment attorney to see if there are other violations. Make sure you file for unemployment. Bring a copy of the termination papers with you to give to the unemployment office.

you do not have to sign anything...ask them for a copy so you can have someone (mom, dad, friend, husband, etc.) review it and tell them you will mail it back, and then keep it if you feel the need. They can fire you for anything, at any time, so whatever you feel was unfair doesn't matter. get your paycheck, they cannot keep it.

You don't have to sign anything. But your old employer can become difficult........

Johnnie M
Well. Some associates I know had a situation similar to yours. According to what you have done for the job:You may be able to take them to court.

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