The Pawffice: Archie Explains The 5 Protected Categories of Employment At-Will

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  2. The Pawffice: Archie Explains The 5 Protected Categories of Employment At-Will
employment at-will

Archie Explains The 5 Protected Categories of Employment At-Will

Now that I have been working at a law firm for close to a year, I think I have gotten pretty good at this whole law thing. Sure, I don’t practice law. I don’t know the law front and back, and I don’t give legal advice. I’m a dog. However, that doesn’t mean I haven’t learned some things while working here. The people here are smart, and they know I’m smart because when they tell me to sit I obviously do.

So after I heard the term employment at-will, I had to know what it is. I hear our attorneys tell clients all the time that Tennessee and Missouri are employee at-will states, but I don’t know what that means. Attorney Patrick Crone was nice enough to explain it to me.

Basically in Tennessee and Missouri, as employment at-will states, you can be fired for any reason at all unless it’s a protected category. That seems mean, but I don’t make the rules. If I did, then walks during the work day would be a mandatory right. So, what are the protected categories? Let me break them down:


You can’t be fired for being too old. So employers cannot replace employees  just because they don’t like how old they are, and then replace them with a younger person. This makes sense. I turn two in February, and I am freaking out about it. All the puppies I hangout have been making fun of me that I’m going to be a teenager in dog years.

It’s been stressing me out, but at least I know I can’t be replaced at work for a younger more energetic puppy. *Note from the staff member transcribing Archie’s blogs. Don’t worry. He is plenty energetic. *


You can’t be fired for your race. When Patrick told me this, I was confused. If I raced any employee here, I would dust them. I have four legs. I’ll crush them. So obviously you can’t be fired for losing a race.

I was very wrong. He explained that he couldn’t fire me for being a black dog because I have black hair. He can’t fire me and replace me with a golden retriever just because he prefers that kind of species of dog. I can’t be fired just because my hair or fur is black, and that’s a relief because I don’t even understand why that would be a thing.


You can’t be fired for what kind of religion you practice. I asked what that means, and he said that’s too complicated for a dog to understand. Fair. So, he told me that I couldn’t be fired for religion, and we should leave it at that. I accepted that answer, got my treat for listening, and moved on.


You can’t be fired for your gender. I can’t be replaced by a female dog just because the office may or may not have read an article detailing that female poodles are more relaxed than male poodles. I am a good boy. Sure, I ran down the hall recently and almost tripped one of our attorneys for the twentieth time. It’s not my fault you hired me without seeing what I was like when I hear the elevator door open. You’re stuck with my high energy. *See what I meant earlier. *


You can’t be fired for a disability or veteran status. I asked what a disability was, and Patrick replied that’s another example too difficult to explain to a dog. Great! Treat please!

I do feel bad that there are two protected categories for employment at-will on here that people say, “I won’t be able to understand.” I would be offended, but I got treats out of it, so who cares! If you want more detail on both religious and disability discrimination, click here! That page will be able to explain all of these better than I can! If you want even more information on employment at-will, click here!

I really appreciate you reading this for me! Now that I’ve gotten working in an office down, I want to be able to help you learn what I’ve learned working here. Check back in February for my next blog, and I’ll be doing another Archie Madness in March!

*Note from Patrick, these are the main five categories of employment at-will protected categories. Since there are other more complicated reasons, that’s why you should come to us for your legal issues. Our attorneys will help you, and we’ll make sure Archie doesn’t trip you at the elevator!

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