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Discipline and termination

State procedures

Are there state-specific laws on the procedures employers must follow with regard to discipline and grievance procedures?

Arizona has no state-specific laws on the procedures that employers must follow with regard to discipline and grievances.

At-will or notice

At-will status and/or notice period?

The Arizona Employment Protection Act provides that Arizona employees are generally at-will employees (A.R.S. § 23-1501(A)(2)).

What restrictions apply to the above?

To challenge termination of employment under the Arizona Employment Protection Act, an employee can proceed under four theories of liability:

  • termination in breach of written contract, setting out that the employment relationship will remain in effect for a specified time or expressly restricting either party’s right to terminate the employment relationship;
  • termination in violation of Arizona statute, including the Arizona Civil Rights Act;
  • termination in retaliation for refusing to violate the Arizona Constitution or Arizona statute; or
  • for public employees, where the employee has a right to continued employment under either the United States Constitution or the Arizona Constitution.

Final paychecks

Are there state-specific rules on when final paychecks are due after termination?

When an employee is discharged, he or she must be paid the wages due to him or her within seven working days or at the end of the next regular pay period, whichever is sooner (A.R.S. § 23-353(A)).

An employer that violates Arizona wage statutes can be liable for treble damages (A.R.S. § 23-355). An employer has an affirmative defense to treble damages if it can establish that there is a good faith dispute regarding the amount of unpaid wages.

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