->''"Sooner or later you will be found out. Hopefully by that time you'll have made yourself indispensable and they will look the other way. This is called reaching the [[UsefulNotes/WinstonChurchill Churchill Stage]]. This is that glorious state when you have made yourself appear (it doesn't have to be true) so invaluable that you can walk around the office with a bottle of bourbon hanging from your hand and no one will breathe a word."''
-->-- '''Frank Kelly Rich''', ''[[QuickNip Juicing on the Job]]''

In fiction, there are certain characters who may be damn good at what they do; however, their general behaviour should have gotten them fired or at least severely disciplined long ago. If the good guys have this, expect it to be eliminated when the TyrantTakesTheHelm. Common to {{Work Com}}s, and {{Cowboy Cop}}s. May be decreed by StatusQuoIsGod.

Unfortunately, this is TruthInTelevision in a number of places, since bosses often see it as a trade-off. Note that the employees might not always ''want'' this, since the ones who actually care about doing a good job are forced to spend a lot of time cleaning up the messes made by coworkers who milk this trope. When that happens, the employees might be just as happy to see their coworkers gone.

Compare ContractualImmortality, BunnyEarsLawyer, MildlyMilitary, {{Nepotism}}, VetinariJobSecurity and PermanentElectedOfficial. Contrast GeorgeJetsonJobSecurity. For office conflicts that seem to have no outside recourse, see NoSuchThingAsHR. If you have Ultimate Job Security whether you want it or not, see ResignationsNotAccepted.



* Johnson, an office drone in commercials for Kellogg's Raisin Bran Crunch cereal. He seem to do nothing but sit at his desk all day eating the advertised cereal. His low-level boss, Smith, really ''wants'' to fire him, but is unable to because the bosses at the company are idiots who somehow seem to think anything Johnson does is brilliant, even giving him Employee of the Month in one of the ads.

[[folder:Anime & Manga]]
* Ugen Kokonoe of ''Manga/CageOfEden'' blows up his classroom on a regular basis and has never been arrested, let alone fired. The students are completely baffled as to why.
* In ''LightNovel/{{Durarara}}'', Shizuo's property-destroying antics would have (and ''has'') gotten him fired from any other job long ago, even with Tom vouching for him. Shizuo himself is aware of this and really has no clue how he's held on to this one job for as long as he has other than the possibility that his manager is just really, ''really'' nice. That and his antics make him scarier than Satan which is an asset [[EvilDebtCollector in their job]].
** His antics ''do'' have a detriment -- all the property he destroys is paid for by the agency, and they dock his pay in return. Seeing as Shizuo really can't get a job anywhere else and that his little brother is an idol who is undoubtedly filthy rich, he doesn't really care. If anything, he's more surprised that he's paid at all.
* ''Manga/{{Eyeshield 21}}'':
** Gaoh, who constantly and deliberately injures opposing players, even to the extent that they will never be able to play again. Everything Gaoh does is strictly within the rules of football, as he's never seen hurting a quarterback after he's gotten rid of the ball. He's just insanely strong, such that he can cause bruises with his pinky.
** Forget the opposing teams, the main example is Hiruma. Of course, it's more his extensive blackmail files that keep him from being expelled or banned, but even those rarely get brought up later on because, hey, he ''wins''.
** If it weren't for the fact that Shinryuuji's coach is more like something out of a martial arts movie, Agon probably would've been kicked off the team a long time ago.
* ''Manga/GunslingerGirl''. In the first episode cyborg girl Henrietta flips out and kills an entire roomful of terrorists. Jean wants her reconditioned despite the objections of his brother, but Chief Lorenzo overrules him. Justified as Section 2 is a new unit that's still [[InterserviceRivalry proving its worth against rival departments]] -- it's better for Lorenzo to pass this off as a success than admit to glitches in the cyborg program.
-->'''Lorenzo:''' "I agree Henrietta's got some problems, but she's an excellent assassin. Besides, we got the man we were looking for, and lost none of our own. You need to look at the bigger picture, Jean."
* Quenser and Heivia of ''LightNovel/HeavyObject'' should have been either kicked out of the military or ''arrested'' for some of the stunts they've pulled, especially those times where the knowingly disobeyed orders or ''opened fire on their fellow soldiers''. Despite this both are still in the military and the same unit. It's all but admitted that the higher-ups want to keep them for their ability to take down Objects and are worried that they'll defect to another supernation if punished too much.
* ''VisualNovel/HigurashiWhenTheyCry'' has Dr. Irie, whose behavior around Satoko would get ''anyone'' fired, let alone the only doctor in the Village.
* ''Manga/KoiKaze'': Odagiri's persistent perverseness and obsession with high-school girls ought to get him fired from almost any job... and he works for an ''arranged dating company''. How did he even get through the interview?
* ''Manga/OnePiece'':
** Vice-Admiral Garp is known as "The Hero" to the common man. He was going to report that he let Luffy escape on purpose, and implicitly would have gotten away with it. His subordinate convinces him that a simple lie would at least be less trouble. He can brag about his son, considered by the Marines to be one of the most dangerous men in the world, in public and be beyond punishment. Basically, nothing h does will ever result in discipline. It helps that his boss is also his best friend.
** The Seven Warlords of the Sea can get away with a ''lot''. Only an extremely public scandal and/or defeat to a rookie, or a significant amount of BadassDecay can get anyone kicked out. As long as they're still perceived as strong enough to be useful to the World Government, and don't attempt outright rebellion against it, they're virtually guaranteed to keep their very cushy positions. For perspective, one was able to get away with planning a ''ZombieApocalypse'', [[spoiler:until his BadassDecay got him kicked out]].
*** And another of them was able to [[spoiler:form an alliance with Luffy, who by this point has ''twice'' openly declared war against the World Government, which is considered the worst crime anyone can commit]]. When this was discovered, one of the Admirals told him that he could ''still'' keep his position as Warlord, so long as he [[spoiler:declared Luffy to be his minion rather than his partner]], nothing more than a token display of loyalty to the World Government.
* Team Rocket of ''Anime/{{Pokemon}}''. Despite almost never succeeding in anything, as well as spending large amounts of money on HumongousMecha, Giovanni still hasn't just fired them.
** Since he no longer pays them, and [[ReassignedToAntarctica reassigned them to Hoenn/Sinnoh]], it's likely that Giovanni simply doesn't consider them to be a part of the organization anymore. Letting them roam on their own is much simpler than filling out the paperwork necessary to fire them.
** Eventually averted. After Jessie, James, and Meowth wind up getting credit for the takedown of Team Galactic, Giovanni assigns them to be the Rocket Admins of Unova, at which point the massive confidence boost makes them incredibly effective at their job.
* Dojima in ''Anime/WitchHunterRobin'' comes in late, leaves early, takes extra-long breaks, and spends most of her time looking at fashion magazines, plus she was only hired because of who her father is. [[spoiler:Subverted in that she's really there as a spy for the parent company, which is suspicious of the new procedures instituted by the Japan branch - she acts like a slacker who owes her job to nepotism, but this may just be her cover.]]
* Mahiru Inami from ''Manga/{{Working}}''. Can't serve male customers [[DoesNotLikeMen without punching them on the face]] and breaks walls, yet she has no problem keeping her job, with the weak HandWave of the manager being too lazy to care. [[SarcasmMode Because money for repairs grows on trees]].
* ''Manga/RosarioToVampire'': Several of the teachers at Yokai Academy have committed felony-grade crimes against the Newspaper Club; for example, Kotsubo nearly raped Mizore ''twice'' and almost got her expelled by manipulating events to make her look like the aggressor, Ms. Ririko brainwashed students to force them to study while dressing up as a {{dominatrix}}, and Hitomi Ishigami [[TakenForGranite petrified her students]] and used them as art subjects. The most they ''ever'' get is temporary suspension, nothing more.
* ''Manga/YuYuHakusho'' has [[SadistTeacher Mr. Iwamoto]], Yusuke's teacher. He encourages Mr. Akashi to erase an answer on Kuwabara's test so that he could get his friend fired from his job, steals from his students and frames Yusuke for it, and (though in his defense, under the influence of the Makai Insects) assaulted the principal while attacking Keiko. Despite those incidents, he still has his job by the end of the series.
* Mr. Kimura from ''Manga/AzumangaDaioh'' is an {{ephebophile}} who openly admits he only became a teacher so he could look at high school girls, and he'll even skip his own class if it means he can look at the girls during swim lessons. Despite the girls and other teachers being aware of this, and even with him making some strong advances on Kaorin, nobody seems to actually do anything serious about it, mostly just telling him to buzz off.

* ''ComicStrip/{{Dilbert}}'': Wally is a notorious slacker with a bad attitude, but has avoided being fired through a combination of office politics and the PointyHairedBoss' inability to judge the contributions of (or remember the identities of) his subordinates. Methods include: personal favors to the PHB, reporting his more ambitious colleagues to threatened superiors, having the PHB beaten on the occasion he *was* fired, tricking the PHB into signing favourable documents without reading them, and... just plain being lucky (the PHB admitted once that he's fired bald guys at least 7 times after mistaking them for Wally.)
** Borderline case of CutLexLuthorACheck - if he put as much effort into work as into [[LaboriousLaziness protecting his work-free lifestyle]], he'd be at least as productive as Dilbert. Based on a coworker Scott Adams had in RealLife, who was ''deliberately'' attempting to get fired after having discovered that the company's severance package is better than its pension plan.
** In Wally's specific case, he's been on the job long enough that he remembers some things about the company's old computers that no one else knows, which contributes to his job security. This was the engine for an episode of the Dilbert TV show.
** Lastly, there was an elderly employee who could never be fired due to knowing secrets of the company that keep it alive. He ended up passing the secrets to the person sitting closest to him at that time before passing away... that person was ''Wally.''
** An appearance by the Grim Downsizer at a training course:
--->'''Downsizer''': I'm here to decruit the entire training staff and anyone who has enough time to attend these courses.\\
'''Wally''': My name is Dilbert. I'm here in place of Wally, [[BlatantLies who is working hard to build a better tomorrow]].
** Carol, the department secretary, is bitter and unproductive. The [=PHB=] ''tried'' to fire her once, but he couldn't fill out the termination paperwork without her. She also has a dark version of this trope and can't get out of her job even though she wants to. It was revealed once that she has an MBA, but her secretary job creates a stigma.
** For that matter, the [=PHB=] himself. He once hired Dogbert to read his boss's mind to learn what his boss thought of him. Dogbert later told him that his boss knows the [=PHB=] is an inefficient oaf, but doesn't want to go to the trouble of firing him, and then having to hire someone else.
** Also the case for many, ''many'' minor characters, be they sociopaths, convicted criminals, or simply morons who dedicated their lives to roaming from cubicle to cubicle talking about how hard they work and carrying a coffee cup. One, whose name may have been "Irv", never did ''anything'' but couldn't be fired because he'd written the company's accounting software in the mid-80's as a deliberate BlackBox - a million lines of undocumented spaghetti logic.
* ''Franchise/{{Tintin}}'': Thomson and Thompson are probably the worst detectives in the world (they were reasonably competent in ''Cigars of the Pharaoh'' [[{{Flanderization}} but then...]]), yet they keep being sent on important missions. The pinnacle of this trope at work is undoubtedly ''Destination: Moon''/''Explorers on the Moon'', where they are assigned to protect the Syldavian space program (!!) and end up reporting for duty wearing [[GorgeousPeriodDress traditional Greek outfits]], "arresting" a doctor's skeleton model, and accidentally stowing away on the Moon rocket (thus jeopardizing their oxygen supply) due to deciding to "guard" said rocket and believing the launch was at 1:34 ''P.M'' as opposed to 1:34 ''A.M''.
* The title character of the comic ''Comicbook/GastonLagaffe'', he's asleep more than awake on his job, his backlog of work is enough to fill the whole office, he accidentally set fire to things several times, keeps playing with toys during work hours, builds crazy inventions and lets them loose in the building, at least once blew up part of the building and on all occasions there where managed to mess up the signing of important contracts. Yet, no matter what chaos he causes and despite him only having a minor job as a office courier and errand boy, he never seems to get fired.
** Well, he was once put in charge of the company archives, and turned it into a veritable sea of books and files, where only he could find anything without full spelunking gear...
** On a side note, he ''was'' fired once but was re hired shortly after, said incident was when the artist took a holiday which meant the next comic had some delay. That aside not even throwing a plunger in his bosses face got him fired.
** The in-story explanation is apparently that he somehow endeared himself to the in-story newspaper readers, enough for his de-hiring to provoke an outcry and a lot of mail demanding his return. This is probably linked to his ''other'' function in the [[AnthologyComic real-life paper]], which was [[http://www.objectible.net/forum/showthread.php?39809-En-t%EAtes-de-Franquin/page2 appearing on the first page cosplaying as the hero of one of the comics]].
* In ''ComicBook/DarkReign: ComicBook/TheHood'', the Controller's power play and constant attempts to undermine the Hood's authority are outweighed by his intelligence strategic acumen. Realizing he can't kill him, the Hood places one of the Controller's own slave discs on him to keep him in line.
* Ola Bog Rise, the goalie from the Norwegian football comic ''Sleivdal''. Every player on that team are terrible - [[RuleOfFunny that's the premise of the comic]] - but Ola is the only one that the coach is, for inexplicable reasons, actually pleased with.
* ComicStrip/FrumpyTheClown was this with his teaching job, the running gag being that the Principal wanted to fire him but can't due to the powerful Teachers Union. However, he was finally fired in the end of the strip's run, when the budget cuts gave the Principal an excuse to get rid of him.
* ''ComicBook/{{Superlopez}}'': López has been threatened with being fired several times, not to mention that he keeps disappearing from work without warning whenever some villain attacks his city and taking holidays left and right so he can fight evil abroad. And in the early comics, he spent the little time when he actually was staying at work just practicing origami.
** Okay, he actually was fired once in ''Los alienígenas''. That's pretty much it.
* For years, Courtney in ''ComicStrip/{{Retail}}'' was this. She was rude to customers, and did very poorly at her job, but she never seemed to get close to be fired. This was finally averted when Marla, [[RankUp who was promoted the store manager]], fired her. She hasn't been seen since 2013.
** Also with Cooper, who manages the stock room. He frequently goofs off, pranks people, and openly insults Stuart, the district manager, on a frequent basis, but he's never fired due to him being good at his job. The one time Stuart did try to fire him, Lunker (a big, intimidating, incredibly strong man) ''threatened him'', which probably helps keep his job.

[[folder:Fan Fiction]]
* It's noted in ''Radiant Garden Renegades'', set in the same universe as ''FanFic/KingdomHearts3FinalStand'', that Braig's idea of playing with baby Kairi was taking her toys and going so far as to dangle her upside-down over a ''flight of stairs''. Aside from an ArmorPiercingSlap from Kairi's mother Rimi and discipline from Kaname and Ansem the Wise, the former the Captain of the Guard and Kairi's father, he was allowed to keep his job. In real life, doing something like dangling an infant over a staircase wouldn't have just gotten him fired; it would have gotten him arrested.
* ''Fanfic/ChildOfTheStorm'' features a variant. According to Loki, the only reason Fudge is still Minister of Magic by ''Ghosts of the Past'', despite his epic string of blunders in the first book, is because literally no one else wants his job, because they neither want to have to clean up his mess nor deal with the encroaching power of [=MI13=] (specifically [[TheDreaded Director Wisdom]], for whom tormenting the Ministry is one of his few pleasures in life).

* Franchise/IndianaJones' many unprofessional tendencies are lampooned [[http://www.mcsweeneys.net/2006/10/10bryan.html here.]] Fortunately for the world, it is mentioned in the [[Film/RaidersOfTheLostArk first film]] that he had been at "Marshall College" for ten years, and he is referred to as "Professor" which is the highest faculty rank, and not as some think a courtesy title (especially in TheThirties). Therefore he had published his articles, gotten his tenure, and then gone on to do what he really loved -- which is what they all do.
** However, even tenure isn't enough for him to avoid [[Film/IndianaJonesAndTheKingdomOfTheCrystalSkull getting suspended]] during the RedScare for (involuntary) association with Soviet agents raiding a top secret facility [[spoiler:- though at the end of the movie he gets cleared offscreen and then gets promoted to assistant dean]].
* James in ''Film/TheHurtLocker''. He disobeyed orders, messed around with the disarming procedures, left the base without any orders, went hunting insurgents through the alleys on the night without orders, backup or any clue about what he's doing, [[spoiler:getting Eldridge shot and severely wounded in process,]] and generally act like an all-around douchebag. One wonders how did he pass the EOD training, let alone keeping his job. [[spoiler:Twice]].
* The nanny in ''Film/JustGoWithIt''. She is clearly uninterested in her job and often uses her hours to do things other than take care of Katherine's children (such as hit on men and watch {{Showtime}}). But somehow, she stills holds down the job and even joins them in Hawaii.
* ''Film/{{Ted}}'' takes this one step further with its main character and his job at the groceries. His generally raunchy attitude and highly inappropriate behaviour not only got him hired, but repeatedly gets him promoted. In the epilogue, after being caught eating potato salad off of his girlfriend's ass, he gets promoted to manager. [[SpringtimeForHitler Subverted in the sense that Ted was trying to fail the job interview so he wouldn't have to get a job, and from then on, was trying to get fired.]]
-->'''Manager''': You had sexual intercourse with a co-worker on top of the produce that we sell to the public?
-->'''Ted''': [[CrazyAwesome I fucked her with a parsnip last week]], and [[spoiler:I [[{{Squick}} sold the parsnip to a family with four small children]]]].
-->'''Manager''': That took guts. We ''need'' guts. I'm promoting you.
-->'''Ted''': [[JerkassHasAPoint ... You got a lot of problems, don'tcha?]]
* In ''Film/TheHeat'' no one, including the captain, particularly cares for Mullins, but they're all so afraid of her that they just let her demean and talk to everyone however she pleases without any repercussions. As noted by Ashburn later, she's probably one of the most dedicated cops in existence.
* ''Film/OfficeSpace'' has a very odd version with Peter, whose BrutalHonesty about how oppressive the work environment is (including ''five'' managers for one employee) results in a series of rewards and promotions for him, while his comparably timid coworkers are on the chopping block for cutbacks.
* Probably the only reason Dante Hicks and Randall Graves keep their jobs as ''Film/{{Clerks}}'' is because [[TheGhost their boss is far away and only communicates to them by phone.]]
* Corporal Miller spends most of ''Film/TheGunsOfNavarone'' being chronically insolent, but Mallory is forced to put up with him because as the team's sole demolitions expert, he's the only person they have capable of destroying the titular guns.

* Foaly in ''Literature/ArtemisFowl'' gets away with insulting his boss because his skills are literally irreplaceable. Not only is he the best techie they've ever had, but even if they did find somebody else who could at least do the job competently, [[VetinariJobSecurity the entire security system is rigged to completely fail unless Foaly himself accesses it]].
* ''Literature/BastardOperatorFromHell'': Simon Travaglia. True, his job as a sysadmin is only partly protected by being very good at what he does, and largely by means of threatening, blackmailing and (in extreme cases) ''killing'' anyone who might try to replace him.
** It probably helps his job security that his assistant is the nephew of the CEO of the first company he works at in the Register-era stories, and indeed got them both jobs at the company.
* ''Literature/HarryPotter'':
** The fact that Hogwarts even remains in operation despite having a running body count has got to be an example in and of itself, but a surprising number of the teachers also count. And that's not even getting into the fact that Hogwarts hasn't had a Defense Against the Dark Arts (which is arguably the most important class taught at any school) teacher last longer than a year.
** Professor Binns, who is noted as being able to make 'bloody giant wars seem dull and boring'. Seems Hogwarts teachers never get fired, they just retire or die. Binns didn't let dying stop him, so Hogwarts students will forever be stunted in terms of their historical education.
** As a Seer, Sibyl Trelawney's got only two accurate predictions under her belt sprinkled among numerous failures including predicting the deaths of a number of very much alive students over the years. As a teacher she's got a similar record. Save for Lavender Brown and Parvati Patil, every single other student she teaches doesn't take her seriously and they've been known to make up fake predictions just to pass her class, which they do because she doesn't realize they're making it up. She is by any reasonable measure terrible at her job even without considering her untreated alcoholism (she regularly uses the Room of Requirement to dispose of her empty sherry bottles), but she retains it despite this. Yeah, Dumbledore's keeping her around to keep her safe from Voldemort in case he wants to target her over her prophecy concerning his downfall, but that's no good reason to waste your students' educations by allowing her to teach.
** Severus Snape, while an unmistakable genius in the field of potion making, is decidedly less qualified as a teacher, consistently playing favorites with Slytherin students and bullying and degrading any other students, particular Hermione Granger and Neville Longbottom, the latter of whom is legitimately terrified of Snape, and at the best of times Snape treats Harry with utter disdain for something that happened between Snape and Harry's father, before Harry was even born!
** Argus Filch, a borderline [[TheSociopath sociopath]] who's one step away from being a serial killer. He explicitly enjoys causing students pain because he's jealous that they're learning magic while he's incapable of using it. At no point is the idea of firing him ever entertained.
** Peeves also counts. Why don't they expel him? Really looks like Dumbledore wants a bit of weirdness in Hogwarts. [[WordOfGod Rowling]] stated that Peeves is like bad plumbing; it always comes back. Dumbledore is just better with a spanner then most others. To clarify, Peeves is an incarnation of chaos. Get rid of Peeves, you'd have a new one appear soon after. It's a case of BetterTheDevilYouKnow, because a new poltergeist might not be cowed by the Bloody Baron, or be occasionally loyal to the school.
* In the novel ''Red Square'', Arkady Renko asks a Russian defector working for Voice of America in West Germany why the American bosses don't fire him for his insubordination. The defector replies that they try to once a year but that German labor laws are designed so that Germany isn't stuck with a lot of unemployed foreigners, so they always fail to meet the legal requirements to do so.
* ''Literature/TheWarAgainstTheChtorr''. The Uncle Ira Group protects the protagonist Jim [=McCarthy=] despite him committing several acts liable for court martial (including desertion, assaulting a superior, leading renegades to a secret US military stockpile, appropriating military property and personnel, and summarily executing civilians) partly because he's good at his job, but also because [=McCarthy's=] habit of causing disruption can be turned to their political advantage.
* The hiring process for faculty members at Unseen University in ''Literature/{{Discworld}}'' is less "become an expert in your field", and more "find an empty room, turn up at meals times, and try to keep out of the way of students". This is because the job description of a Discworld wizard consists of "''not'' using magic". On the Disc it is really not difficult at all to turn someone into a frog; it is much ''more'' difficult ''not'' to turn everyone around you into frogs once you realize how easy it would be. Every time in history the wizards got off their collective asses and actually did stuff, horrible things happened. The certifiably insane Bursar is probably the most extreme example, as he's still a member of the faculty even though he no longer has any significant control over his magic and is useless even for his nominal responsibility of keeping the University accounts (which is mostly done by Ponder Stibbons).
** Speaking of Stibbons, he can't be fired either because of his practicality: he's the [[OnlySaneEmployee one level-headed wizard]] out of the bunch. This tendency causes him to take up the responsibilities other wizards aren't using, to the point where in ''Discworld/UnseenAcademicals'' we discover he constitutes a faculty majority vote ''all by himself.''
* In ''ComicBook/TransformersTransTech'', Commander Cheetor is the head of the Offworlder Zone Security Administration. Even though he frequently annoys his superiors via BotheringByTheBook to help give some justice to the downtrodden offworlders often at the expense of uppity [=TransTechs=], he'll never be fired. Why? Because he's the only one willing do it, especially since it was a case of ReassignmentBackfire to begin with.
* The eponymous organization in ''Literature/TheLaundryFiles'' hires most of its employees not due to their competence, a great need for employees, or them even applying for a job, but because it's been calculated that lifetime wages and pension for a low-level civil service job add up to less than the projected cost for the government to [[KilledToUpholdTheMasquerade assassinate one of its citizens who happened to stumbled upon the paranormal]]. Once hired, they've ensured you're neutralized. If you want or are capable of being useful (to a widely varying degree of "useful"), that's good. But most employees aren't doing anything really worth doing, or get any opportunity to make mistakes with consequences beyond getting themselves killed. Which is also usually good. And the exceptions are, if not irreplacable, too valuable to let go of over anything not worth killing them for. Either way, the Laundry doesn't fire anybody for anything - or kill that many of its people either.
* In ''Literature/HeartOfADog'', Dr. Philip Philipovich Preobrazhensky gets away with regularly flipping off the House Committee, lives technically alone in seven rooms while most of his contemporaries barely get one, spits out blatantly anti-Soviet views and nostalgically longs for the cultured old times. He can afford it because not only is he really good at his job, the authorities use his surgery services as well.
-->''"You know, professor," said the girl with a deep sigh, "if you weren't world-famous and if you weren't being protected by certain people in the most disgusting way," (the fair youth tugged at the hem of her jerkin, but she brushed him away), "which we propose to investigate, you should be arrested."''
* ''Literature/AgeOfFire'': Dragons for the most part don't view the lives of their thralls as worthwhile, but Rayg still manages to carve out a niche for himself in the Lavadome anyone, since his [[OmnidisciplinaryScientist near-universal scientific skills]] make him too important for the dragons to dispose of.
* ''Literature/TheTreasureOfAlpheusWinterborn'': In the sequel ''The Dark Secret of Weatherend'', Miss Eells is in danger of losing her job as Head Librarian of the Hoosac Public Library after being magically hypnotized into ruining a tea party being held by Mrs. Hanson Oxenstern, head of the library board. [[spoiler:Then the last chapter reveals that this trope is in play - when she was made Head Librarian, her predecessor was the one who drew up her contract and, knowing what Miss Eells was like, included a clause stating that she could not be fired ''for any reason'', something Miss Eells had forgotten about until it was pointed out when she was formally reinstated.]]

[[folder:Live Action TV]]
* ''Series/{{Angel}}'':
** Cordelia Chase. You can't fire her. She's Vision Girl. *sticks out tongue*
--> '''Angel:''' Well, I know she can't type or file. Until today, I had some hope regarding the phone.
** Justified in that Cordelia is a direct line to the Powers That Be, making her utterly indispensable to Angel's mission. Angel is rudely awakened to this fact after he ''does'' fire her.
* ''Series/AshVsEvilDead'': It's established from the very first episode that Ash is a terrible [[SoulSuckingRetailJob Value Stop]] employee, having done such things as take phony sick days using his pet lizard as an excuse. His {{Jerkass}} boss, Mr. Roper, outright tells Ash to his face that the only reason he hasn't fired Ash is because he has seniority.
* ''Series/TheBigBangTheory'': Pretty much every member of the original main cast (i.e. not including Bernadette and Amy) as well as Barry Kripke, seem to have this at their jobs.
** The guys cause all kinds of mayhem at the university, squander university funds for personal use (such as Howard using them to build a sex robot and using a hundred-thousand dollar machine to heat sandwiches) or damage building property (Sheldon and Kripke drive fighting robots through the hallway ''and the doors'') and are accused of sexual harassment (Howard practically lived at the H.R. office before he got into a steady relationship) and never face any lasting disciplinary consequences.
*** Except for one time, when Sheldon got himself fired and nobody would hire him back because of his huge ego and belittling tendencies. He was only rehired because his mom traded the boss some sexual favors, and even then, he has to be reminded he can fired at the drop of a hat.
** Penny, by her own admission, is bad at her job, but only leaves the Cheesecake Factory when she quits on her own.
* The BBC's ''Series/{{Banished}}'' has a spectacularly lethal version of this. Because they're the only Western settlement in Australia and the next nearest settlement is months away by ship, the penal colony utterly depends on their one and only blacksmith Marston, to the extent that the Governor is willing to let other convicts starve to death in order to overlook Marston's food theft. It's only when Marston [[spoiler:is killed by the person he was starving]] that those in charge realise how ludicrously they behaved because they thought he was indispensable.
** 'Indispensable' is a word used a lot by the replacement blacksmith when [[spoiler:he is about to be shot]]. But Major Ross clearly wants to avoid this trope.
* [[SmallNameBigEgo Ted Baxter]] from ''Series/TheMaryTylerMooreShow,'' was a bumbling fool, yet in the series finale he was the only member of the news room ''not'' fired, while all of the more competent characters were. Presumably he was good enough at what he did (i.e. reading the news and acting as the face of the network), and in the latter seasons as Baxter's character was softened – at Ted Knight's request – the emphasis was less so on his mistakes.
* ''Series/TheOfficeUS'': Michael Scott.
** Though it does help somewhat that everyone at Dunder Mifflin seems to be pretty incompetent at times and the fact that, out of all the branches in a struggling economy, the Scranton branch makes the most profit (probably because of the much more competent employees).
*** The show seems to suggest that Michael is either kind of a paper-selling savant or has a lot of business savvy at the expense of all other intellectual abilities.
*** And he does get fired. And he [[StartMyOwn starts his own]] paper company! With french toast, and Cheez Puffs! [[spoiler:Since it turns out the branch, and therefore the company can't survive without him, he's rehired after being bought out to cancel the effects of his sabotage, making the original example ''pen''ultimate job security.]]
** Dwight's employment is easily the most baffling. Start with his possession of weapons in the office and go from there. Go on, I've got time.
*** He was salesman of the year. As with Michael, Dwight is shown to have amazing abilities when it comes to selling paper, despite his other failings.
*** It may also be that it's very apparent that any and all accomplishments at Dunder Mifflin are the only thing Dwight has in his pathetic life (in one episode he nearly has a breakdown when Steve Carrell's character admits that Dwight's position was actually a fabrication to keep him happy, and he has no authority over any of the other employees). They may just not want to have a suicide on their consciences.
*** The GrandFinale reveals that once Dwight manages to get his life in order, his loony tendencies tone down significantly and he is able to turn the company into the #1 paper supplier in the region.
** One could argue that as long as Michael is in charge of the branch all of the employees there have ultimate job security (except Toby, but he doesn't seem to do anything to deserve to be fired). He is softhearted enough to find it difficult to fire anyone who has worked for him for a long amount of time and once he even said that "I don't want my employees to think their jobs depend on their performance."
** Subverted in [[Series/TheOfficeUK the UK version]], where the second series has David Brent being made more accountable for his actions and decisions, and where ultimately he is let go.
** Andy, when it was revealed to the district manager that he had been gone for three months shortly after he was promoted and lied about it was never fired because the manager owed his job to Andy. Even so, Andy lost a ton of respect from the other employees and would [[NeverLiveItDown use his absence as an excuse whenever they wanted to leave.]]
** Kevin only keeps his job because Michael likes him. He is the third accountant in an office that only needs two and it becomes apparent that the other accountants do all the real work. When his work is finally audited, it is revealed that he invented a new number just so he could balance his books.
** The GrandFinale reveals that when [[spoiler:Dwight]] becomes regional manager he actually fires the incompetent and useless people like [[spoiler:Kevin and Toby]] and the branch becomes much more efficient as a result.
* The [[RoleCalled title character]] in ''Series/{{House}}'' is one of the best doctors in the world, but constantly bullies his fellow staff and patients. Not to mention that he violates both laws and ethics left and right- not only can't he be fired, but apparently can't be arrested either. Luckily, House only takes on a few patients, and even some of them die.
** Also slightly averted in that House's job has been repeatedly threatened over the course of the show. Each time he gets out of it only because of his skill and with help from Wilson and Cuddy. Cuddy has also pointed out that the hospital got him cheap because of his demeanour - nowhere else would even ''hire'' him.
** And then further averted with Foreman, affectionately called "House Lite" by Cuddy, not being able to find a job after he uses a House-esque protocol-breaking procedure to save a patient.
** Cuddy mentions that some of the funds go toward a special cause: to pay for lawsuits in case of House's antics. This is yearly though it has been mentioned that it's never been used fully nor sometimes actually needed.
** It's mentioned that part of the reason House became such a good doctor is after seeing the doctors of a Japanese hospital all having to ask for help from a brilliant 'untouchable' working there as a janitor. He figured that if he was a good enough doctor, he'd be able to get respectable work no matter how much of a jerk he was.
* If it wasn't for the direct intervention of Series/HogansHeroes on many occasions, Colonel Klink would probably be at the Russian Front. He's not a bad administrator, but he has no real control over his camp.
** Yes, but as far as Klink's superiors can tell, he's an ass kisser who is absolutely ruthless as a camp commandant.
** Schultz, on the other hand, is known to be incompetent to everyone who knows who he is and is usually very lax around his superiors. The prisoners count him as an ally (he's in on it, though he wishes he wasn't) and have to pull strings to keep him around.
** Either Klink or Schultz has to be the deep penetration agent who routinely gives them information. Klink is shown struggling to keep his job and is helped out from time to time. But Schultz is able to use his vast wealth as a Toy manufacturer to make his superiors suck up to him for a job after the war.
* In ''Series/DocMartin'', Dr. Ellingham's first receptionist, Elaine, was lazy, disobedient, surly, and incompetent to the point of being a liability to Port Wenn's public health, but the EccentricTownsfolk were so attached to her that the one time Ellingham tried to fire her, he ended up having to rehire her to make the townsfolk stop shunning him.
* ''Series/{{Scrubs}}''
** Todd is [[InformedAbility said to be]] a very good surgeon; however, he spends most of his time sexually harassing the female staff. More recently, he has also sexually harassed the ''male'' staff.
** Dr. Cox in the same series is also a bully, to the extent that House may have been InspiredBy him. Except that Dr. Cox ''has'' been disciplined. He even got suspended from the hospital in the second episode. The only reason he hasn't been fired is his ex-wife is on the hospital's board of directors. Plus he's a damned good doctor. And Kelso admitted that he needs him in order to balance out his own focus on the bottom line on occasions when an uninsured patient really does need care.
** And then there's poor Doug Murphy, who was constantly killing his patients with such incredible ineptness, everyone called a major goof-up anyone did "A Doug". He got put in charge of the morgue. To his credit, he is in fact a brilliant pathologist -- largely because he's ''[[SeenItAll done]]'' most of the crazy crap that killed the patients.
** Ted, most definitely not an example of BunnyEarsLawyer is repeatedly called incompetent and is essentially to Law what Doug is to Medicine and yet somehow still maintains his job.
** The one who really has this is the Janitor. He never does his work, and is constantly pulling pranks or messing with people in other ways, to the extent that he trapped JD in a water tower for an entire day and got off totally scot-free. Of course, it turns out that the main reason for his security is because Dr. Kelso openly doesn't care what the hospital employees did as long as the money rolled in and he got to enjoy the perks of his job. Upon Kelso's retirement, he's replaced by Dr. Maddox, who actually acts like an administrator, having the Janitor fired on the spot when she sees him trip JD in the hallway.
** Dr. Zeltzer actually drugged not just a senior doctor but a ''board member'' and is still somehow employed and not incarcerated.
* Tracy Jordan on ''Series/ThirtyRock''; {{justified|Trope}} by the fact that he is a major celebrity. This is referenced in several episodes:
-->'''Jack''': You're a star; you can do whatever you want to. That's your job. It's our job to make it go away.\\
'''Tracy''': I love this country!
* Linda in ''Series/{{Becker}}'' is [[TheDitz ditzy]] to the point of incompetence, yet she's still hanging around after multiple seasons. This is due to her being popular with the patients.
** May be justified by Becker being a JerkWithAHeartOfGold.
*** Becker owes her dad a lot of money her job is the repayment. This is in the subtext of one episode in Season One, where it's hinted he owes her wealthy father money.
* Pretty much all the surgeons in ''Series/{{MASH}}''. To be fair, given the shortage of medical staff in the Korean War, this would appear to be an exaggerated TruthInTelevision.
** A documentary done for one of the show's anniversaries included interviews with real MASH doctors, who said the show was ''frighteningly'' less exaggerated than most people thought for this very reason.
** Frank Burns is perhaps the biggest question mark - he's a greedy, lying, manipulative hyper-conservative who sticks to the letter of the law and refuses to bend for anything, but he's also so incompetent in his actual job the he shouldn't even be permitted to ''play'' the "Operation" board game. Most of the other staff have excuses for their Ultimate Job Security:
*** Hawkeye and Trapper are a pair of alcoholic slackers who constantly play practical jokes on everyone else, but they and Charles brought the 4077th to a 90%-plus survival rate. {{Lampshade|Hanging}}d in one episode when Henry said he would have fired them long ago if they weren't the two best surgeons in South Korea. This opinion comes to be shared by more than one guest star general.
*** Henry is an indecisive, easily dominated scaredy cat who has no business running a military unit - but he runs a ''damn'' good hospital.
*** Hotlips is a rigid, uncompromising harpy who severely punishes the slightest infraction, yet has no qualms about breaking those same rules herself - but she's also a damn good administrative nurse who the other nurses seem to really like.
*** None of the other nurses like Margaret. In fact, when a visiting ball-busting nurse visits the unit to do an inspection, Margaret complains about how terrible this woman is, then she hears the other nurses mention that this woman is almost as bad as Margaret.
*** Additionally, she often breaks military protocol, going over the commander's head several times, breaking regulations for her own gain, using lower-ranking soldiers as her personal servants, and even admits to the other nurses that she'll look the other way when they break regulations if they will include her in their illegal activities.
*** Charles is a pompous, arrogant {{jerkass}} who complains loudly about anything and everything and was seen making racial slurs toward the priest in one episode. But unlike his predecessor Frank Burns, he's actually a very competent (if slow) surgeon, with cardiac expertise the others lack.
*** Radar, the company clerk, is childish to the point of {{flanderization}}, sleeps with a teddy bear, and keeps unauthorized pets, but he's a HypercompetentSidekick with an uncanny ability to anticipate the Colonel's needs, to the point that he's often running things himself (see Henry above).
** Not that anyone in the 4077th wants to be there, but [[CrazyAwesome Klinger]] was actively trying to get out on a Section 8, and they never even [[FailureIsTheOnlyOption get rid of him.]] Although when he tried to pull it on Colonel Potter in his first appearance, Potter saw right through him, told him to get into uniform and stop acting like an idiot. Klinger complied - for that episode. He still wore dresses during the Potter years until Radar left and he took over his position as Company Clerk.[[labelnote:*]]And who knows how far he would have gone if his actor, Jamie Farr, hadn't suddenly realized that his kids were of age to watch the show, and decided he didn't want them to be ashamed of their dad getting laughed at for wearing a dress.[[/labelnote]]
* AgentMulder in ''Series/TheXFiles'', and to a lesser extent AgentScully and Skinner. Averted when he got a less understanding boss than Skinner.
* Jack O'Neill in ''Series/StargateSG1'' gets away with talkback, insubordination, and disobeying orders which would have gotten him court-martialled at least six times over if he was in the real US Air Force.
** Somewhat justified, as he was already retired before the series and they dragged him back forcefully to head the titular team.
** And Samantha Carter got away with openly saying no to ''him'' in the first season at least twice, sometimes in situations in which a leader really, ''really'' needs to be able to expect that his decisions will be followed. This is ''long'' before {{flanderization}} brought about his childlike third season personality.
** Also lampshaded in a ClipShow with the new president marveling at how the entire team is still employed.
** Jack and Hammond seem to be good friends, and due to the secretive nature of the SGC, the rules seem to be a little looser... but Hammond nonetheless dutifully [[LampshadeHanging hangs a lampshade]] on it in one episode where he produces a file he's apparently kept on O'Neill's behavior since he joined the SGC.
*** And in that episode Jack actually ''was'' court-martialled. Turns out [[ThePlan it was part of a sting operation]].
** TruthInTelevision, really. When the Chief of Staff of the Air Force made a guest appearance on the show, Richard Dean Anderson asked if there were Air Force colonels as bad as him. The answer? "Worse."
*** Most militaries have an unspoken rule that says that if your skills are truly irreplaceable, then they have to put up with you to get those skills, and that sometimes means frequently looking the other way when one of your officers is an insubordinate jackass.
** Of course it helps when you're very VERY popular with Earth's strongest allies, who happen to be the most powerful and advanced race in existence at that point and the only thing that has kept the {{Big Bad}}s in check for the past few hundred years.
** Being able to keep a score about saving the Planet probably helps as well.
** In ''Series/StargateAtlantis'' an IOA agent noted that Sheppard and others were often insubordinate. It was then brought up that they were the best at what they do.
** The Franchise/StargateVerse is MildlyMilitary in general. In the case of SG-1, O'Neill's insubordination isn't too much weirder than putting an archaeologist and an alien on a combat team. (Officially, that team is the "first contact" team, so in-universe it just makes sense to have a broad range of expertise on it, but the free rein given Jackson and Teal'c is as implausible as that given O'Neill.)
* In ''Series/TwentyFour'' it's common for characters to ''assault'' superiors who they disagree with or suspect of wrongdoing, and you'd expect to wind up in ''prison,'' let alone still working there. However, they still have their jobs when the dust clears. CTU's turnover remains high, though, for [[AnyoneCanDie other reasons]].
* Harmon Rabb from ''Series/{{JAG}}'' is quite prone to this trope. Half the stunts he's pulled off should have had him drummed out of the Navy, or at least left him with very poor chances of promotion. No matter how egregious stunts he pulls off: StatusQuoIsGod. Even when did quit for good he got reinstated by the Secretary of the Navy due to a lack of personnel.
* ''Series/{{Star Trek|TheOriginalSeries}}'': James T. Kirk consistently put himself and most of his senior officers in danger in mission after mission by taking them on Landing Parties, put his ship in danger with his "cowboy diplomacy", disobeyed direct orders from his superiors and lest we forget, treated the Prime Directive--the Federation's most serious rule, which Starfleet personnel are supposed to uphold with even their lives if necessary--as little more than a suggestion. Any real ship's captain who behaved even remotely like Kirk would be instantly court-martialed and--at the ''very least''--permanently stripped of any command authority at all. Of course, this being an action-adventure TV series with sci-fi window dressing, and later a series of movies, the RuleOfCool reduced all this to "business as usual". Made all the more outrageous by the fact that in the episode in which Kirk ''is'' court-martialed, there is much talk about how upstanding a starship captain has to be. Kirk's supposed crime in that episode, which he is of course innocent of, is really a minor infraction compared to the stuff he really got up to. Note that, in the films, the only way they were able to haul his ass out of the captain's chair was by [[KickedUpstairs giving him a better one on Earth]]. And one of those was voluntary because he was feeling too old to do the job.
** {{Lampshade|Hanging}}d in one [=NextGen=] ExpandedUniverse novel in which an admiral opines to Picard that Kirk obviously had so much contempt for Starfleet Command that he would just invent stuff for his reports, "[[DisContinuityNod including that one ridiculous incident in which he claimed someone stole his first officer's brain.]]" Kirk was never removed from command because of the absolute loyalty of his crew, who always backed him up.
** {{Lampshade|Hanging}}d again in ''Series/StarTrekVoyager''. Janeway and Tuvok were talking about when Tuvok served on the Excelsior (during the events of ''Film/{{Star Trek VI|The Undiscovered Country}}''). Janeway said that if Sulu, Kirk, or any of them had been Starfleet Officers today, they'd all have been kicked out.
*** {{Justified|Trope}} in another episode of ''Voyager'' when Chakotay mentions that there are always a few young officers who prove to be unsuited for deep-space duty during their first starship assignment, but given their particular situation there's nothing they can do about it. They can't just reassign or dismiss someone, so they have to do everything they can to get the best performance out of every crewmember.
** Justified in that if you have a deep-space exploration ship continually getting mixed up in situations where one wrong decision can lead to the end of human civilization at the hands of cosmic powers, and you know of only one officer who has the talent for continually making the right call in such situations, you keep that man employed no matter what he does. Organizational discipline is one thing, but species survival trumps it.
** It makes sense if you think of it in terms of the Age of Sail rather than modern militaries. The captain had ''a lot'' of power compared to what we think of today.
** Sisko from ''[[Series/StarTrekDeepSpaceNine Deep Space Nine]]''. His aggressive behavior, antics and use of biological weaponry on a planet population should have had him court-martialed. But like Kirk, he is the commander of the figurative Fort Apache in space and the literal Messiah of the Bajorans. It's not as if they can replace him.
*** There are also a few suggestions that Starfleet specifically assigns him to jobs when they need this approach. For instance, his ruthless tactics contained the Maqui rebellion despite it being led by Starfleet defectors and he planned several major offensives in the Dominion war despite his relatively low rank.
*** By the end of the war he was de facto the head of the alliance and the most powerful man in the quadrant. His direct superiors accepted his 'recommendations' so readily that you'd think the ranks were reversed, the Klingon Chancellor is a personal friend that he indirectly put into power, and the Romulans (who's membership in the alliance he was directly responsible for) tended to just go along with the other two.
* ''Series/{{NCIS}}''
** Leroy Jethro Gibbs. What makes him stand out from his ''entire team'' of {{Bunny Ears Lawyer}}s is that ''their'' job survival is at least plausible, given that Gibbs is using his senior position to cover for them. He, on the other hand, not only bears the bad karma for all of ''their'' eccentricities on his own shoulders, but also has the habit of treating all orders from above as polite suggestions -- at best. This is to the point where he has twice expressly defied the direct orders of the ''Secretary of the Navy'' for the purpose of doing it ''his'' way. Yes, he continually delivers brilliant success after success, but you still wonder just how patient his bosses can be.\\
Well, in the cases where it doesn't go higher than the director of NCIS, it's mostly that Gibbs could pretty much with one phone call become the director himself. The others occupy the position because Gibbs really doesn't want to be the director of NCIS. Besides being damn good at his job, Gibbs has also built up a lot of friends in high places, or people who control them (Holly Snow, anyone?), and he is always very close to the director (with Jenny and her predecessor), or has a big load of dirty laundry (with Vance). Simply said, he can coerce or blackmail anyone who has any chance of getting him fired.
** One episode features a large group of Navy codebreakers who all fit this trope. Their commander flat out states most of them would fail the military psychological exam due to various mental disorders (neuroses, paranoia, etc.)
** There are those who would say GenkiGirl and resident hot LabRat Abby would also qualify. She never wears a uniform, has strange tastes in everything, and doesn't take much better to orders from on high than Gibbs himself does, unless it's Gibbs who gives the order. However, she's also supposedly one of the single most gifted forensic scientists in the country, if not the world, and NCIS would not ''dare'' give her reason to leave, as most other agencies would be chomping at the bit to get her to work for them if she ever quit. It's explicitly stated in one episode that she receives a handful of lucrative job offers every year, and she turns them all down - because she loves NCIS, and Gibbs, too much to leave. Plus she's friends with Gibbs. Shepherd tried to make her follow the rules. That lasted until Gibbs found out about it.
** All NCIS personnel seems to benefit from getting quite some leeway from their director, especially in the early seasons. This may be because NCIS was originally introduced as a small, underfunded organization, that relied on [[CowboyCop creative methods]] to stay ahead of big players like the FBI in the InterserviceRivalry.
** They all probably get that leeway because they're friends with Gibbs, and he makes the director give it to them. Gibbs gets it either because, in the case of the first two directors, he's friends with the director, or in Vance's case, he has enough dirt on the director to ruin his career. Possible both with Shepherd.
* Semi-subversion: The [[TheDitz uber-incompetent]] Matthew actually ''was'' fired from his job on ''Series/NewsRadio'' at one point; however, he got it back later in the season.
* Schemer in ''Series/ShiningTimeStation'' somehow manages to keep his job as the titular station's arcade manager, despite being an obnoxious {{jerk|Ass}} who's not above lying, cheating, and occasionally even stealing to earn a few extra nickels. In one episode, he even takes other people's belongings without asking them, and tries to sell them. And yet, the worst Stacy Jones (who runs the station) or J.B. King (the head of the railroad) do to him is tell him he's been bad, and not to do it again.
** Maybe they should have tried hair care -- in one episode, after Schemer's semi-identical [[IdenticalGrandson ambiguous relation]] Schemie fails to squirm his way out of getting caught, Schemer punishes him by combing the family trademark cowlick flat. This distresses Schemie far more than pretty much anything anyone has ever tried on these two before or since.
** Later justified when it's revealed that Schemer isn't an employee of the station, but leases the space for the arcade from the railroad. Clearly despite the income loss from the juke box, he's doing well enough that it's not worth terminating his lease.
* In ''Series/MyHero'', Mrs. Raven's open hostility to patients (and everyone else) might have been a problem for her were her boss not perpetually distracted by his own self-admiration. Also, as Dr. Crispin finds out after temporarily firing her for wanting a raise, she's made herself indispensable by organizing his patients' files in such a way that she's the only one who knows how to find anything.
* For quite a while, Mr. Lucas, the cheeky junior salesman in ''Series/AreYouBeingServed'' was able to get away with insulting his higher-ranked fellow employees and superiors every episode. Then, later on, he disappeared from the show. The only hint of an explanation for his disappearance was a passing line from Captain Peacock mentioning a time where the store didn't make any money and they fired the junior. This line was meant to intimidate Mr. Lucas' successor, Mr. Spooner -- who managed to get away with insulting Mrs. Slocombe and Captain Peacock (though without Lucas' panache) until the final episode of the series.
* ''Series/{{Torchwood}}'':
** Ianto kept a Cyberman in the Hub's basement (directly endangering the world) and disobeyed orders to shoot her. But he still manages to stay on the team.
** In a season 1 episode, Gwen takes the newly-resurrected Suzie out of the Torchwood Three base to see her father. Upon seeing this on a camera, Jack mentions that she is "getting herself fired", but she ultimately remains part of the team. Likely because [[spoiler:Suzie was manipulating her]].
** The season 1 finale involved the entire team--having been driven over the DespairEventHorizon--having a mutiny against Captain Jack. Owen even goes as far as to [[spoiler:shoot Jack in the head, killing him. Of course [[DeathIsCheap Jack]] [[{{Immortality}} can't die]], but Owen does not know that at the time of said shooting]]. Their actions afterwards unleashes a giant monster upon the city, though Jack ends up stopping it. Despite the fact that he told them many times not to open the Rift (which led to the aforementioned incidents), he forgives his entire team.
** Justified in the opening credits - Torchwood is "Outside the government, beyond the police." Jack is pretty much autonomous once Torchwood London at Canary Wharf goes down.
* The entire cast of ''{{Series/Pizza}}'' and ''Series/SwiftAndShiftCouriers'' are ''terrible'' at their jobs, and are capable of screwing out [[HilarityEnsues routine jobs]], but manage to stay employed... the latter mainly because [[OnlySaneMan the hapless boss]] [[ButtMonkey gets blamed for everything]], the former because the boss is just plain AxCrazy.
* ''Series/MadMen'': Don Draper can apparently disappear from work for days (possibly weeks!) without any long-term consequences. But this cuts both ways, as Don discovers he can't have Pete Campbell fired for endangering an account, because Campbell's family is wealthy and connected.
** As Duck Phillips discovers to his dismay, even if Don ''were'' fired, he could always go straight to another ad agency because he has ''no contract'', and therefore no "non-compete" clause.
** The entire office seemed to have this. Among other things, one employee was openly dismissive of Madison Square Garden's plan to tear down the old Penn Station ''while they attempting to land that client''. Not only is he not fired, he is not even taken off the account. Not to mention the secretary who ran over a guy's foot with a lawnmower in the office.
** This is deconstructed in the sixth season, as Don's dysfunctions for the first time ''weren't'' worth his contributions to the company, as he immediately lost the first major account he brought in in months. Despite being a full partner in the company at this point, the other partners force him to take leave for several months--but he's still being paid, to some of their annoyance.
*** By that point he was not only under contract, but owned a significant portion of the agency as a partner. The other partners would have had to buy him out, which was more money than they easily afford. Thus he had even more job security, the only thing the partners could do was try to shame him into resigning.
* First footman [[spoiler:later under-butler]] Thomas Barrow from ''Series/DowntonAbbey'' is a thieving, manipulative and overall unpleasant character, but he's actually good at the job so nobody has the heart to fire him.
** Each season ends with him weaseling his way out of a situation he really shouldn't have been able to weasel out of, and then ''getting promoted.'' The third season ends with him being ''outed as gay in 1920'' and managing to not only ''stay out of jail,'' but be promoted from valet to under-butler.
* Justified in ''Series/{{Battlestar Galactica|2003}}''. As illustrated when the Pegasus arrives, the ship is essentially a frat house, and crew members commit what should be career-ending offenses on an alarmingly routine basis. Hell, even Adama is getting stoned and [[spoiler:having an affair with the president.]] Of course, given that they're all that's left of the military, they're really lenient by necessity.
** Some of what happens on the show should get some of them fired. For example, Starbuck may be a great pilot, but her unpredictability would cause any leader to lose faith in her during one of her less lucid moments.
** Similarly, Apollo disobeys direct orders on a routine basis and ends up getting promoted up the chain of command.
** Tyrol essentially commits mutiny and is told he'd have been executed if he wasn't needed.
** It is somewhat implied that the Galactica was a dumping ground for the Colonial military to put their incompetent, or at least, least-effective personnel. It was old and about to be decommissioned even before the Cylon invasion began. Adama and Tigh had been given command of the Galactica as a punishment for screwing up an intelligence operation (they'd even been drummed out of the Fleet and had only managed to get back in due to Adama's wife's political ties). It's the great irony of the series that this is the only warship of consequence to survive the apocalypse.
* A major theme in ''Series/YesMinister'' is that it is practically impossible for a civil servant to lose their job, regardless of how incompetent, malicious or damaging their conduct. As such, whilst the politicians come and go, the civil servants are there practically for life, which is one factor which has allowed them to cement their control over the running of the country.
** TruthInTelevision: this actually happened a lot in the ancient world when one kingdom or empire would overrun another. While the top leadership and the elites were executed/dethroned/etc., the civil servants would be retained by the conquerors because they actually knew how to run the country. The Mongol conquest of China is a very good example.
* Detective Stabler from ''Series/LawAndOrderSpecialVictimsUnit'' routinely ignores [[DaChief Capt. Cragen's]] instructions, has beaten suspects in the interrogation room on multiple occasions, beaten suspects while apprehending them, and punched another cop in the face all while somehow keeping his job.
* Detective Goren from ''Series/LawAndOrderCriminalIntent'' is eccentric, moody, and generally behaves like he should be in Bellevue rather than the NYPD. But he is one of the best detectives on the force with a ridiculously high closure rate. Even when he does get fired, it doesn't stick because his new Captain pulls some strings to give him back his badge.
* Patrick Jane of ''Series/TheMentalist'' breaks laws left and right in his methods of solving murder cases. He's a pretty shady BunnyEarsLawyer and breeds trouble, yet the agency wouldn't dare fire him because he's just that good. However, every antic of his brings his supervisor, Agent Lisbon, closer to being fired in favor of someone actually able to control him.
** Of course, ''she's'' got this too eventually, because when they ''do'' fire/indefinitely-suspend her over one of Jane's messes, they discover Jane is unwilling to work with ''anybody'' else (intentionally playing his new "handler" into embarrassing his own boss with ''his'' bosses). She may not be able to ''control'' him, but she's the only one he's willing to cooperate with.
** Does Jane even work for the CBI? He is a consultant and not an employee. They just need him to catch bad guys, which is even lampshaded in the show.
** Ironically, his investigation into the Red John case (his whole motive for working with the CBI), [[spoiler:ends up revealing secrets and corruption which get the entire CBI ''disbanded'', costing himself and the entire main cast their jobs. But when he's later recruited/drafted by the FBI, he forces them to hire Lisbon to work cases with him, giving her Ultimate Job Security again based on his indispensability]]
* Miles Hutchison, the Secretary of Defense on ''Series/TheWestWing'', holds the President in open contempt, attempts to screen promotion candidates based on their political views, and uses the media to undermine foreign policy initiatives so frequently that Bartlet and Leo attempt to plan around it. He lasts the entire length of the series.
* The title character of ''Series/GetSmart''. At one point, the Chief actually does threaten to fire him, and Max replies that the Chief wouldn't dare: According to CONTROL's seniority regulations, if Max is fired, then the Chief would have to promote [[TheDitz Larabee]] into Max's job. Also, Max is the local steward for CONTROL's branch of the spy union.
* Sheriff Roscoe P. Coltrane on ''Series/TheDukesOfHazzard''. Despite being corrupt and a bumbler, he remains sheriff because Boss Hogg wants someone he knows he can control, and the people of Hazzard County keep electing him because they'd rather deal with the devil they know than the devil they don't know.
* Series/BuffyTheVampireSlayer
** Buffy is given a job as a guidance counselor at the new Sunnydale High School in the seventh season. The reason for her hiring was so she could protect the students from the Hellmouth under the school. Good thing too because we are [[ShowDontTell shown and told]] that she isn't a great counselor. Whenever she asks about her great counseling skills the person she is talking to gets an amused look on their face. And whenever she is seen talking to a student she seems too prone to thinking about the monster-fighting part of her job to properly listen to what the students say. Previously, she had blackmail material on a fast-food chain and used it to get her shitty job back. Excusable only because she was pretty much dead inside at the time, and their "secret" was that their menu was secretly Vegetarian (using a convincing tofu substitute for beef and chicken). Having said that, she ''was'' offered money in response to the blackmail, and took the shitty job instead, and was unfailingly polite despite the fact that she basically had the blackmailed person by the balls.
** Even earlier, Giles had this with the original Sunnydale High. Snyder quickly figured out why you should never mess with someone whose nickname is [[NamesToRunAwayFromReallyFast Ripper]].
** For that matter, Snyder. His extreme disdain for children makes it clear he should be nowhere near the educational field. He got the job specifically to keep the Hellmouth and all the deaths it causes out of the public eye.
** Not to mention Buffy in her job as [[TheChosenOne The Slayer]] pulls some pretty outrageous stunts that the Scooby Gang just have to put up with, [[WhatTheHellHero other than voicing their disapproval]]. As Buffy points out to Giles in ''What's My Line'', "Y'know, if you don't like the way I'm doing my job, why don't you find somebody else? Oh, that's right, there can only be one." (Given that TemptingFate is a RunningGag in the series, a second Slayer promptly turns up).
* [[TheDitz Michael Kelso]] from ''Series/That70sShow'' somehow manages to become a [[BadCopIncompetentCop police officer]], and despite all of his antics, he's never fired. These include breaking into the police academy, losing his supervisor's squad car, and setting the academy on fire with a flaregun. In one particularly funny instance he was "guarding" Eric when he was arrested after being caught in one of the group's antics (Hyde, Donna, and Kelso ditched Eric after the car wouldn't start). After it was revealed that he was also part of the prank, a senior officer shoved him into the cell with Eric.
* ''Series/CornerGas'': Fitzy and his position of mayor. He doesn't seem particularly good, and at one point is afraid of losing it, only to be told that "nobody wants your job". Subverted and averted in one episode though. Emma runs for mayor and wins. The exception is A) She flat out admits during an interview that she doesn't even ''want'' the job, she's simply running out of spite over Fitzy telling her husband to shut up, and B) the entire episode was just a dream anyway.
* ''Series/GameOfThrones'':
** There was a rebellion seventeen years previously, resulting in the overturn of a three hundred year old dynasty. [[TheSpymaster Varys,]] [[EternalCivilServant Pycelle]] and [[ColonelBadass Barristan]] are all survivors from that regime. They were kept on as each of them is too good at what they do to have been removed from their respective posts.
*** Varys is actually the one best fitted for this trope. Pycelle keeps his position mainly because it's really difficult to remove a Grand Maester, and Barristan gets to keep his because he's A) a [[KnightInShiningArmor true knight]] and exceedingly honorable, and B) without Barristan, the remaining Kingsguard on duty with the most seniority would have been ''Jaime Lannister''.
** Littlefinger tries to bump it up to VetinariJobSecurity, right to Cersei's face, but she reveals that she's impulsive and capricious enough to just up and kill him, no matter the consequences.
* [[Series/{{Castle}} Rick Castle]] can always get his consultancy position back even if the police commissioner wants him gone by calling his buddy, the ''Mayor of New York City.''
** This was seriously threatened in one episode where said Mayor was a suspect in a murder investigation. Had the Mayor been guilty, the first thing the captain (who is much less appreciative of Castle than her predecessor was) would've done was get rid of Castle and it was made clear that there was nothing anyone could've done about it.
** Castle eventually did get tossed when he sought assistance from a mob family to identify a killer, which resulted in said killer being taken out by a mob hit. The situation was so serious even the Mayor wouldn't protect him. Castle does eventually get back after a number of episodes when he's charged with assault and the charges are dropped in exchange for 1500 hours of community service...as a consultant to the NYPD.
* Almost the entire cast of ''Series/FTroop''. Captain Parmenter is an 1860s Col. Potter who also would trip and fall over thin air. Sergeant O'Rourke uses his position to run a side business trading with the Indians - a 19th Century equivalent of a staff sergeant doing business with Cuba. Corporal Agarn is a hyperactive Frank Burns who also is O'Rourke's business partner. The bugler can't play a tune, the lookout has 20/400 vision and no one can fire the cannon without hitting the lookout tower. However, it's more than hinted that Fort Courage is another example of those aforementioned military "dumping grounds" for incompetents; it's actually stated in one episode that everyone was put there in hopes that they would all kill each other.
* Almost every character on ''Series/WKRPInCincinnati'' is a complete screw-up who never even comes close to getting fired. It's {{lampshade|Hanging}}d many times, and finally explained in the last episode when it's revealed that the owner actually wants the station to lose money so she can use it as a tax write-off.
* ''Series/GilmoreGirls'': FrenchJerk [[JerkWithAHeartOfGold (with a heart of gold)]] Michel keeps his job as a hotel concierge despite ignoring and even insulting customers on a routine basis.
* Averted by "The Second Act" episode of ''Series/TheMiddle''. After three seasons of her not, as far as we've ever seen, actually selling a car, Frankie gets laid off (although her boss suggests she wouldn't be likely to be rehired).
* In general: anyone who's been called a 'loose cannon cop on the edge' or some variation thereof.
* Ed from the Good Burger sketches in ''Series/AllThat''. Ed is incredibly incompetent, and he screws up nearly everything he's put in charge of. A frequently asked question by fans was why Ed was never fired. Creator/DanSchneider [[ShrugOfGod couldn't answer that.]]
* ''Series/CriminalMinds''.
** {{Lampshade|Hanging}}d in "Elephant's Memory"; out of concern for the [=UnSub=], Reid not only goes out to confront him at the end of the episode, he elongates his arms as he talks to him to "shield" him from his own team's guns. Since the [=UnSub=] is holding a gun himself- visibly- and is known to be extremely violent, Reid was playing with fire by getting so close to him. Not only that, Reid neglected to tell the rest of the team that he figured out- before they did- that the [=UnSub=] was even ''going'' to the police station, having only Prentiss (who was already with him) to provide realistic cover, and Reid even thwarted Prentiss at times. Fortunately for Reid the [=UnSub=] is apprehended without incident, but on the plane flight home, Hotch tells Reid that he "should fire (Reid) for what he did" and that next time he will fire him, before commending him on his work.
** Erin Strauss counts too. Her witch hunt of Hotch and Gideon in Season Two likely wouldn't sit too well with her superiors, as well as her rather comical mishandling of the crime scenes in "In Name And Blood" at the beginning of Season Three. How she keeps her job is beyond me.
** One episode had Penelope allow a major computer hack because she was playing an MMO at work with an unsecured private laptop. She never faces any repercussions for this, even though it would get you fired from a basic, entry level office job, let alone of the arms of the country's national security protection.
* Grover from ''Series/SesameStreet'' keeps his job as waiter at Charlie's even though he constantly gets his customer's order wrong, though Grover means well. Of course, Chalie's Restaurant is one of the few places Grover is shown to be employed at regularly (he also worked at the Mail-It Shop during its brief run, but seems to have been more competent in that job). Who's to say that he DOESN'T get fired from all his other jobs...
* ''Series/MarriedWithChildren'': As a shoe salesman, Al Bundy is a disgrace to his profession. He constantly insults the fat women who make up most of his clients, has forgotten how to work the cash register due to the fact that he hardly ever sells any shoes, plays with the shoes like toys, insults his boss Gary to her face, and on the very rare occasions when he actually ''does'' manage to sell some shoes, he just pockets the money. Despite all this, he's never fired. It may be because, aside from Al's BlackBestFriend Griff, Gary can't find anyone else besides Al who's desperate enough to work in the shoe store. In one episode she does fire Al and Griff because she manages to find replacements for them. The replacements [[ScrewThisImOuttaHere immediately quit when they realize what they'll have to put up with]] and Gary's forced to hire Al and Griff back.
* Carrie from ''Series/TheSuiteLifeOfZackAndCody'' is a hotel lounge singer, hardly a secure job to begin with, and she manages to keep the job in spite of Zack and Cody's disruptive and destructive antics.
* Vince and Howard of ''Series/TheMightyBoosh'' have this in series one. They work at a zoo helmed by two insane madmen who openly dislike them and routinely try to kill them, but for some reason Bainbridge and Fossil never think to simply fire them every time they survive. In the entire series, it took the zoo closing to upseat them from their jobs.
* ''Series/EliStone'' cannot be fired from his law firm, no matter what craziness he gets up to (and since it's [[BunnyEarsLawyer Eli Stone]], there's plenty of it). There's actually a ''legal agreement'' to this effect, part of a deal made with a client he represented in the Pilot.
* ''Series/BreakingBad'': The ''only'' reason anyone (most notably Gus Fring, who usually chooses his employees much more carefully) is willing to put up with Walter White's erratic behavior, greed, and power-madness is because he's just ''that'' good at cooking meth.
* ''Series/{{Community}}'': ''Everyone'' who works at [[SuckySchool Greendale Community College]]. Except [[OnlySaneEmployee Professor Kane]], who quit after [[spoiler:Star-Burn's death]]. [[JustifiedTrope Justified]] by [[PoliticalCorrectnessGoneMad Dean Pelton]] and [[StupidEvil the board members']] lax standards.
** [[SubvertedTrope The only teacher to ever get fired]] from Greendale was [[AxCrazy Chang]], after he [[spoiler:[[KnowNothingKnowItAll faked his Spanish credentials]], afterword [[TyrantTakesTheHelm becoming a security guard, taking over and almost burned down the whole school.]] [[DoubleSubversion But then one season later]] ''[[TooDumbToLive they hired him back]]'']].
* One episode of ''Series/LastManStanding'' has Mike finding out his neighbor was laid off by his accounting firm and he wants Ed to hire him at Outdoor Man. Ed tells him he can't do it because there aren't any openings and he can't fire any of the incompetent workers in the department because they all have this for various reasons (one is an alcoholic protected under the Americans with Disabilities Act, another is a woman who will most likely file a gender discrimination lawsuit, etc.)
* In ''Series/{{Westworld}}'' Dr. Ford personally built a huge chunk of Westworld, has complete access and unparalleled control over its Hosts, and insists on keeping all of their data onsite. The Delos board would like to get rid of him, but they're afraid he'll destroy decades of research out of spite if they try it. [[spoiler:Their representative was engaging in corporate espionage against their own company in an attempt to get hold of their own research, and Ford has her murdered - with the implication he's done this once or twice before and they knew it might happen.]]
* In one episode of ''Series/ILoveLucy'', Ethel was having difficulty getting a passport, with the office going to close at 5'o'clock sharp. Ethel threatened to report the man to Washington and get him fired, but he countered that as it was civil service, he wouldn't lose it until he died.
** Ricky enjoys massive job security as a bandleader. Even when he does get fired in Season One's "Ricky Asks for a Raise," he gets a license to pretty much choose his own job when his former workplace, The Tropicana, has trouble keeping its guests when they find out that Ricky isn't working there anymore.
** [[SubvertedTrope]] In the Season 4 episode "Ricky Needs an Agent," Lucy gets him fired from MGM after dressing as an agent.
* Deputy US Marshall Raylan Givens on ''Series/{{Justified}}''. When the audience first meets him, Raylan is in trouble for a questionable shoot of a drug lord against who Raylan had a personal vendetta. Over the course of the series we see him shoot first and ask later to the point that in season 3, when he's actually framed for a shooting crime he didn't commit, his boss has trouble getting him clear because his reputation precedes him. We also see him help his ex-wife replace money she stole from the evidence locker, moonlight as a bounty hunter (which Raylan is explicitly warned is against Marshal rules and grounds for immediate termination), and arrange the execution of a mob boss that threatened his family. His boss describes why he keeps him around despite Raylan's tendency to break the rules to deliver justice as he sees fit:
-->'''Art:'''You're a lousy marshall, but a good lawman.'''
* On ''Series/{{Cheers}}'' Rebecca Howe can be seen as enjoying Ultimate Job Security despite her many shortcomings.
** In season six, Rebecca had a crush on her Lillian Corporation boss Evan Drake even going to the point of invading his home while barfly Norm Peterson was doing a painting job. There was just one problem, Even returns from a business trip and intends to get some well deserved sleep. There are only two problems, Even is a light sleeper and Rebecca is stuck in his closet.
** A story line spanning seasons 8 and 9 features Rebecca having a friendship with another boss named Robin Colcord. There is only one problem. Robin is convicted of embezzling Lillian. After taking a loss by selling the bar back to Sam for pennies, Lillian fires Rebecca only to have Sam take pity on her and hire her as an assistant manager.
** In the Season 11 episode ''The Little Match Girl,'' Rebecca's smoking habit results in a fire at the bar. But she is back to work like nothing happened in the season's third episode.

[[folder: Podcasts]]
* The player characters in ''Podcast/TheAdventureZone'' get up to antics that would get anyone else tossed out on their ear, being rude to [=VIPs=] and superiors, [[HeroicComedicSociopath trigger-happy to the point of murderousness]], and liable to [[KleptomaniacHero loot anything that isn't nailed down]]. The thing is, their track record when it comes to hunting down and safely disposing of [[ArtifactOfDoom Artifacts of Doom]] is two to everyone else's zilcho.

[[folder:Professional Wrestling]]
* Wrestling/StoneColdSteveAustin spent most of his time beating up his boss (Wrestling/VinceMcMahon), humiliating him, ruining his prize possessions, etc., just to get a rise out of him. How he kept his job varied by storyline; either Vince kept him on just to make his life a living hell right back, or he kept him on because, regardless of the fact that he was absolutely miserable, he was still making tons of money because the fans adored Austin, or an independent authority figure (the commissioner, the board of directors, etc.) would thwart Vince's latest attempt to get rid of him.
** There was actually a storyline where Vince did get so sick of Austin and all the problems he caused that he fired Austin, proclaiming that even the buyrates and money weren't worth it anymore. Austin actually showed up the next night in an infamous segment where Austin threatened [=McMahon=] with a [[BringMyBrownPants gun]], only to reveal it was a toy. In retaliation, Vince hatched a plot where he pretended to feud with his son Wrestling/ShaneMcMahon. In retaliation for demoting Shane to lowly referee status, Shane revealed he had signed Austin to a five year contract. Eventually, they revealed their plan while screwing Austin out of a title match using Shane's new found referee power. The point of this plan was to make the next five years of Austin's life a living hell.
** This could apply to Austin in real life as well. Since 2002, he's walked out on WWE on multiple occasions, usually over gripes about where he was being put in a storyline, forcing WWE to officially "part ways" with him (one such incident caused him to lose a multi-picture deal with WWE's Films division). He also has been charged with assaulting women on at least a couple of occasions, not making for good PR. Still, despite all that and him not being in a match since 2003 due to his broken-down body, WWE will keep bringing him back for any small appearance because they know the crowd will always erupt upon hearing that [[MostWonderfulSound sound of broken glass]].
* Wrestling/ShawnMichaels was such an indispensable part of Wrestling/{{WWE}} in the mid-'90s that he got away, [[KarmaHoudini without punishment]], for the ultimate sin -- breaking {{Kayfabe}} by sharing a group hug with his departing friends [[Wrestling/ScottHall Razor Ramon]] and [[Wrestling/KevinNash Diesel]], as well as [[Wrestling/TripleH Hunter Hearst Helmsley]], in the middle of the ring at the end of a live show in Madison Square Garden, despite the facts that, not only were Michaels and Ramon {{face}}s and Diesel and HHH {{heel}}s, but Michaels and Diesel had just finished a brutal steel cage match against each other. HHH, on the other hand, wasn't so lucky; while he avoided being fired for the incident, he did lose out on an opportunity to win the 1996 King of the Ring tournament (this instead went to Wrestling/StoneColdSteveAustin) and spent some time doing penance as a {{jobber}}-to-the-stars.
* People tend to have this if Wrestling/VinceMcMahon is interrupted before uttering the words "You're Fired", and the smart heels have picked up on this. In 2009 Wrestling/RandyOrton punted Vince before he could finish and went to Wrestling/WrestleMania that year. He threatened to sue if he didn't get his guaranteed title shot, but the idea of firing him before he won the Wrestling/RoyalRumble never seemed to occur to anyone. In 2013 Wrestling/PaulHeyman had Wrestling/BrockLesnar interrupt and beat up Vince in order to remain on the roster.
* Wrestling/JoeyStyles in RealLife. The crap he gets up to on Website/{{Twitter}} ''alone'' would get any other employee fired -- besides spoiling major events on WWE programming mere ''moments'' before they actually happen, he regularly and happily insults much of the stuff WWE has put out, including WWECW, and acknowledges (and rips on) on several WWE-considered nonentities such as Wrestling/{{TNA}}. It seems the ''only'' reason Vince doesn't just outright fire him is because the mutants would burn WWE Headquarters in a fit of rage the next day.
* Wrestling/KurtAngle. WWE released him due to health concerns, including a refusal to go into rehab for his painkiller addiction. He promptly jumped ship to TNA, where he got arrested no less than five times, four of which involved being pulled over for a DUI, before finally checking into rehab on his own. Angle had been TNA World Heavyweight Champion at least one of those times, and was booked to retain the title in spite of this. If it had been any other performer (such as Wrestling/MattHardy, who got fired after ''one'' DWI), they would have been shown out the door ''ages'' ago. But since Angle is arguably the biggest star in TNA, he got away with a lot more than any company, WWE included, would have allowed.
* Wrestling/JeffHardy had this for a while. His massive PopularityPower often prevented him from getting fired or from getting de-pushed -- especially in TNA. Then ''Victory Road 2011'' happened, Jeff was sent home, and when he came back, he was told this would be his last chance. He's managed to stay on the wagon since then.

[[folder:Puppet Shows]]
* On ''Series/{{Bookaboo}}'', Bookaboo is a somewhat whiny {{Manchild}} puppy dog in a band, who won't play for the band unless he's read a picture book every day because without this he doesn't have his "bojo." The New Year's special with Paula Abdul indicates that the reason he keeps his job is because his fellow band-members, Paws and Growler, are in awe of him, considering a far better drummer than anyone else in the world. Also, their previous drummers had even more serious problems, so basically they're happy to have him because despite his issues, they could be dealing with worse problems.

[[folder:Tabletop Games]]
* TabletopGame/{{GURPS}} makes Tenure the blanket term for this sort of job security. Interestingly, priests are given as an example of people with Ultimate Job Security.
** TruthInTelevision. Teachers, priests and similar individuals are easier to pass to another district or parish than to fire, defrock or imprison.
* Orsus Zoktavir in {{TabletopGame/Iron Kingdoms}}. He's insane, AxCrazy, prone to team killing and indiscriminate destruction. The favor he carries with the Empress and usefulness as a PersonOfMassDestruction are the only things preventing his own faction from getting rid of him.

[[folder:Video Games]]
* Captain Bannon from ''VideoGame/WorldInConflict'' manages to be everything an officer in the Armed Forces should ''not'' be (cowardly, insubordinate, whiny, arrogant, incompetent and many more), yet the worst thing that happens to him career wise over the course of the game is a transfer to another front. Somewhat justified by the fact that World War III ''is'' occurring and there is a shortage of officers... though Bannon's bungling occasionally reaches levels where he could be considered a bigger danger than the Soviets. If it wasn't for [[spoiler:his Heroic Sacrifice near the end]], he would have surely been court-martialed or possibly executed.
* Commander Shepard from ''Franchise/MassEffect'' becomes a Spectre and does a few questionable things (one way or the other) and has this mainly because the main government of the galaxy is TooDumbToLive and refuses to believe evidence of their impending doom. Repeatedly. But s/he's so needed that s/he gets ResurrectedForAJob, and can get reinstated as a Spectre and still continue to screw up whatever he wants to his/her heart's content. The Council does ask that s/he keep his/her cowboy ways to the Traverse and the Terminus Systems, but that's an empty request and Shepard knows it.
* Inphyy in ''VideoGame/NinetyNineNights'' is only a senior field commander of the Temple Knights with several ceremonial and administrative posts above her. She's also ''astonishingly'' racist even by the standards of a faction called the Forces of Light and quickly goes careening toward the MoralEventHorizon when she mows down hundreds of unarmed goblin women and children. Despite this, she can't even be disciplined due to their allies seeing her as the spiritual figurehead of the entire crusade. Only her equally-ranked and equally-exalted brother dares to talk down to her, [[PlayingWithATrope and this lack of repercussion for her actions makes it difficult for her to keep her moral compass in check]].
* Notable meta-aversion: [[VideoGame/LeagueOfLegends Riot Games]] know exactly [[StopHavingFunGuys what kind of people]] the competitive MultiplayerOnlineBattleArena scene tends to attract and recently made it abundantly clear getting your username on the webcasts doesn't mean you're above punishment: when a well-known American pro player ran afoul of the Tribunal enough times to get his main account slapped with a one-year ban, Riot informed him he could sockpuppet like everyone else all he liked, but he was also personally banned from sanctioned competition for the duration.

* ''Webcomic/LeastICouldDo'':
** Rayne. He got a job as an executive at a multi-national corporation, with the goal of sleeping with the hot female CEO. He routinely sexually harasses all his female co-workers, including the aforementioned CEO and her assistant. He has climbed through the office's air vents ("You'll appreciate it if and when [[Film/DieHard Hans Gruber]] shows up"), climbed the building with a homemade grappling hook when the lift was out, come to work dressed as a Stormtrooper (''Franchise/StarWars'', not Nazi) and once had a prospective employee used as a pinata. He keeps his job, because he's somehow increased company profits to record levels, and his perverseness/immaturity/loose grasp of reality seems to be seen by every other character as amusing or endearing. Yes, he's an outrageous MarySue, but that's sort of the joke.
** It's interesting to note that this trope also applies to the aforementioned prospective employee. Despite being a complete {{Jerkass}} to everyone at the company ("So what's it like to be on the other side of the poverty line?"), including and especially his interviewer (Rayne himself), he ''still'' gets the job because he has all the practical skills required. One can only assume that the world of LICD has ''extremely'' strict equal opportunity employment laws. The selling point with "Archie" was that for all his stuck-up rich snob attitude, he had the skills, education and prospect ideas to really benefit the company. Even Rayne had to admit his proposals were sound, much as he wanted to kick the kid out the door anyway. We haven't seen much of him since, but presumably he keeps his attitude tightly reined in for fear of [[CoolAndUnusualPunishment what Rayne might do to him.]]
* ''Webcomic/CtrlAltDel'' has Ethan, who doesn't even turn up to his job at a video game store half the time, is a {{Jerkass}} to staff and customers when there, and completely walks away from the job for weeks on end. Not only does he keep his job, he ends up OWNING the damn place. Though that last one is justified because Ethan was holding the deed, and the previous owner flat-out didn't care.
* Davan of ''Webcomic/SomethingPositive'' can always keep his job as a medical bill clerk. This is because his job is so horrible that probably no one else would want to apply for it, and because he is the only one left in his group who ''actually does any work''. He realizes this power when he oversleeps in one comic, and after a split-second of believing he'll be fired, promptly goes back to sleep.
* In ''Webcomic/{{Misfile}}'' it's getting increasingly hard to understand why Ash's father is still a doctor, much less employed. The man continually breaches patient confidentiality by talking about female cast members' vaginas (he is an OBGYN) and breasts, and likes to publicly mention his "[[http://www.misfile.com/?page=1086 nimble fingers]]".
** Of course it would appear that among other things, he's nothing but professional in front of his patients - well, except Emily. It would also appear that Tempest is a small town, which may mean he's the only gynecologist, and with the fact he occasionally lectures at Harvard, it can be presumed he is actually highly qualified.
** The part about him being professional in front of his patients is jossed; the entire town describes him as "freaky creepy." The only explanation is that he really is ''that'' good.
* ''Webcomic/ElGoonishShive'':
** Principal Verrückt, [[http://www.egscomics.com/?date=20090115 as Susan notes]]. Heck, one of his idiotic decisions should have gotten his school ''shut down''. (He funneled the budget for maintaining the fire alarms into wall murals, and as a result the sprinklers don't work.)
** Mr. Verres also qualifies. As his boss noted, he has far too many important contacts in both the extraterrestrial and paranormal communities to get rid of without causing an incident. That doesn't save him from getting KickedUpstairs though.
* Josh in ''Comic Critics'' once left his job for months, and found it still waiting when he came back. As he explains it, he understands the storeowner's psychology in such a way as to avoid being fired: "I look at a life filled with bad decisions that led him to this point, and figure there's no reason for him to stop making them now."
* {{Lampshade|Hanging}}d in ''Webcomic/MikeBookseller''. No one is quite sure how Carol is still employed at Booksellers.
* ''Webcomic/MegaTokyo'' zig-zags this with Largo, who was actually hired as a "catastrophe management officer" ''because'' of his [[{{Cloudcuckoolander}} insanity]] and willingness to break numerous laws in the line of duty, but he eventually gets fired for taking it too far. His teaching job, meanwhile, is a straight example: he gets hired due to mistaken identity and keeps his job even though he rarely actually teaches English and constantly endangers the lives of his students and himself. This is repeatedly {{lampshade|Hanging}}d by [[DeadpanSnarker Junko]].
* ''Webcomic/QuestionableContent''[='=]s Tai routinely shows up to her job as a college library supervisor stoned out of her mind on either marijuana, LSD, or both, and never suffers any sort of disciplinary action for it. Contrast this with Faye, who appeared to play this trope straight by maintaining employment at Coffee of Doom despite being openly abusive to customers (justified in-universe by having the customers actually ''enjoy'' her abuse) and her co-workers, but finally crossed the line and lost her job when she showed up to work drunk and was caught topping up with a QuickNip. This has caused more problems for Dora since Faye actually did a lot of work around the shop despite her issues, and Dora's working herself into exhaustion picking up the slack.

[[folder:Web Originals]]
* ''WebVideo/AgentsOfCracked'' is an extreme example -- Swaim manages to keep his job despite going on at least one ''killing spree''. And the kidnapping. And the bomb threat. And the sexual harassment. Him getting fired for selling jokes to the competition is thus quite surprising, but his comedy savant abilities seem to be the only reason the Chief lets Swaim stay.

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* ''WesternAnimation/AmericanDad'': The episode "Toy Whorey" had a teacher who was explaining to Steve's class that he has tenure, and thus it's "virtually impossible" for him to get fired no matter ''what'' he does. As soon as he's finished that sentence, he proceeds to karate-kick a random student in the face right in front of the entire class.
* ''WesternAnimation/SpongeBobSquarePants'': Squidward Tentacles may be this trope incarnate. He openly despises [[BurgerFool his job at the Krusty Krab]], often belittles and insults the customers to their faces, regularly sleeps on the job or dumps his workload on [[{{Workaholic}} SpongeBob]], and it's even implied from time to time that he's actually ''trying'' to get fired... and yet Mr. Krabs never ''does'' fire him. It's even a plot point in the episode "[=SpongeBob=], You're Fired"; Mr. Krabs states that the only reason he's firing [=SpongeBob=] instead of Squidward, despite [=SpongeBob=] being a ''far'' more competent employee, is because Squidward has "seniority."
* ''WesternAnimation/{{Archer}}'': The titular character, as his mother is the head of [=ISIS=], but the entire cast under her supervision could count, with countless cases of insubordination, incompetence, using company equipment for personal use, drug use on the job, and unprofessional sexual behavior, yet no one has been fired. It also helps that Archer is actually a highly effective field agent, if primarily in matters involving violence and assassination.
* ''WesternAnimation/{{Futurama}}''
** Ogden Wernstrom was given tenure by the mayor in an emergency, only to abandon the city in its moment of need. The Mayor's thoughts on the subject? "Well, I'd fire him, but he's got tenure."
** Which brings us to Zapp Brannigan, who somehow manages to keep his job despite being a vain womanizing idiot whose subordinates tend to die horribly. Subverted in "Brannigan Begin Again" where he and Kif were fired after Zapp stupidly destroyed the new headquarters of TheFederation. They were then hired by Professor Farnsworth, prompting Zapp to later hijack the Planet Express ship and try to use it in a suicide mission against a ''neutral planet''. Leela saves the day and is fully prepared to testify as to Brannigan's actions until she realizes that doing so would mean she'd be stuck with him - at which point she swears up and down that he was the hero of the piece, enabling him to get his job back and thus get him out of Planet Express.
* One of the characters in ''AbbysAgency'' does absolutely no useful work on either the overt or covert sides of the business, but can't be fired because he has seniority.
* ''WesternAnimation/CampLazlo'': Bean Scoutmaster Algonquin C. Lumpus, who is generally extremely incompetent and apathetic, and doesn't even ''like'' being a Scoutmaster. [[spoiler:At least until the GrandFinale, where he's finally removed... because it turns out he was never actually the Scoutmaster -- he'd actually locked the previous Scoutmaster in a closet and stolen his job; TheReveal here gets him imprisoned as a dangerous lunatic.]]
* Wouldn't [[WesternAnimation/TheSimpsons Homer Simpson]] be the ultimate example? He's grossly incompetent, monstrously stupid, and frequently leaves his job to pursue insane "lifelong dreams" and spur-of-the-moment opportunities, yet keep coming back to the same job he's always had at the Springfield Nuclear Power Plant. To make matters more baffling, Monty Burns even seems to actively dislike him most of the time, yet even when Burns ''does'' fire him, Homer still winds up with the same old job again by the next episode (if not by the end of the current one).
** It can be noted that Burns probably just doesn't care. He's cut so many corners in the plant that even if Homer was a model employee there'd still be glowing green ooze dripping from the ceiling. As for the dislike thing... keep in mind if you ask him at almost any point in time, he'll respond by wondering who this 'Simpson' chap you keep talking about is. Besides, you might as well apply this trope to ''everyone'' who works at the power plant, as they've all been repeatedly shown to be every bit as incompetent, lazy and stupid as Homer. If Frank Grimes hadn't been [[SanitySlippage driven insane]] by Homer, the rest of his coworkers would have made it happen anyway.
** The one time Homer ''was'' a model employee (in the FlowersForAlgernonSyndrome episode ''HOMR''), [[NoGoodDeedGoesUnpunished he got the plant closed for its numerous safety violations]] because his job (after the first couple episodes) is safety inspector. He's probably kept ''for'' his laziness and incompetence -- he fills the (presumably required) "safety inspector" position without making waves.
** "[[Recap/TheSimpsonsS6E13AndMaggieMakesThree And Maggie Makes Three]]" brings up another factor: schadenfreude. Homer had previously quit the job (because he hated it), but had to return because the bowling alley didn't pay enough for him to support three children. Burns ''enjoys'' watching this pathetic doofus who made a fool of him too many times suffer. He even made a demotivational plaque just to rub it in (which ultimately didn't work).
** Also, remember that the plant employees have a powerful union (The International Brotherhood of Jazz Dancers, Pastry Chefs and Nuclear Technicians) and Homer is the second-most senior employee after Smithers, so he's probably protected by the contract.
** In one episode, Burns tries to silence the inspectors who require Homer to be fired, or get a real training. At this point it looks like Burns keeps the least competent employee in a nuclear power plant just ForTheEvulz.
** Homer is hardly the only example of this trope in the series, and might not even be the worst one, as his security gets at least some explanation. There's Chief Wiggum, a morbidly obese and grossly incompetent cop who rats out his own undercover men by accident and releases dangerous criminals on the condition that they ''go to his son's party''; Skinner, who is respected by nobody and barely manages to keep the school open; frankly virtually all the staff at Springfield Elementary, who show precious little care for their students and violate basic health principles like smoking and drinking in class; Mayor Quimby, an incredibly corrupt womanizer who still manages to stay in power for all eternity; and Lenny and Carl seem to be in much the same boat as Homer when it comes to nuclear incompetence. It's safest to say that Springfield is just made of ApatheticCitizens.
*** Lionel Hutz is a particular example. The Simpsons family will always hire him for cases, even when they're actually better at law than him (mostly be virtue of his blistering incompetence).
--->'''Hutz:''' Mr. Mayor, is it true that you rigged the election?\\
'''Bob:''' No, I did not.\\
'''Hutz:''' ''({{Beat}})'' Kids, help.
* ''WesternAnimation/BeavisAndButtHead'' have never once shown any ounce of competence at their fast food job and have gotten the place closed for health code violations at least once, not to mention blatant workplace violations such as fighting each other in an attempt to earn workman's comp or going "on strike" and just refusing to work for no reason. Yet they were never shown having been fired.
** [[SadistTeacher Mr. Buzzcut]] is a sociopath who berates his students, assaults them, encourages bullying, and threatens his students with bodily harm. Despite this, he manages to keep his job, presumably because Principal McVicker respects his views and often covers for him. The closest he gets to losing his job is in ''P.T.A.,'' where Beavis and Butt-Head out him for his abusive behavior, which puts him under investigation.
* In a more realistic world, [[WesternAnimation/{{Gargoyles}} Elisa Maza's]] tendency to lose guns, and her unannounced six-month disappearance, would have landed her several visits by the Internal Affairs department, if not outright dismissal. She remains a valued member of the 23rd Precinct.
** WordOfGod is that her boss, Cpt. Chavez, used to work under Elisa's father, and is a friend of the family, so she cuts Elisa a bit more slack than usual. Also, Elisa has a pretty solid arrest/conviction record, and her absence made her an ideal choice for an undercover operation in a new gang that popped up while she was away.
* In his first appearance on ''WesternAnimation/TheFairlyOddParents'', [[SadistTeacher Crocker]] mentions his tenure is so good he could get away with killing one of his students' parents with one of his fairy catching devices.
-->"If they survive, they're '''FAIRIES!!''' If not, '''I HAVE TENURE!!'''"
** This was averted in the Dutch dub of said episode however, in which Crocker stated he would get life in prison if he killed Timmy's parents (yet he was so convinced they were fairies he was willing to take that risk).
** There is much more about Crocker that shows how good his tenure is; everybody, including the principal of his school, thinks he's crazy, his students constantly fail their tests since Crocker actually enjoys handing out F's, and don't forget how cruel he gets on March 15, yet he still has his job. In real life, a teacher like that would have been fired a dozen times by now.
* On '' WesternAnimation/JimmyTwoShoes'', despite facing GeorgeJetsonJobSecurity in one episode, Heloise seems to get away with betraying her boss fairly often. This might be because the above mentioned incident [[VetinariJobSecurity ended with Lucius begging her to come back to work]].
* Occasionally {{lampshade|Hanging}}d by Chief Quimby, who wondered why he continued to put up with WesternAnimation/InspectorGadget after our hero had repeatedly blown him up with exploding assignment messages. The facts that the rest of the Metro City Police force was [[PoliceAreUseless almost as incompetent as Gadget]] and the Inspector's extremely high success rate (most of which was due to Penny and Brain, although Gadget himself often made important contributions) probably had something to do with it.
* ''WesternAnimation/KingOfTheHill'' episode, "Junkie Business" provide an example. The newly-hired Strickland Propane employee, Leon, is a drug-addict who barely does his job. He cannot be fired because he went to rehab before being officially fired and is diagnosed under Americans With Disabilities Act protecting him on the job. He takes advantage of the workplace (with the help of [[ObstructiveBureaucrat Anthony Page]]) adjusting to his settings and his behavior causes Hank to quit. This created a {{loophole|Abuse}} reducing the workforce below the minimum requirement for AWDA to take effect, so Strickland promptly fires Leon.
* On ''WesternAnimation/{{Sixteen}}'', Nikki is usually seen slacking off or insulting the clothes she's supposed to sell at the Khaki Barn. In the rare instance where she gets fired or quits on her own, Chrissy always re-hires her (usually by one begging the other), despite Nikki's past treatment of her and Kirsten and Kristen.
* Most of the teachers in ''WesternAnimation/{{Daria}}'' should probably not be allowed to work anywhere near a school (save for maybe Ms Defoe or Mrs. Bennett), but special mention goes out to Mrs. Barch, a StrawFeminist and SadistTeacher who has openly discriminated against the male students in her class, beat up another teacher on several occasions, and had a fling with Mr. O'Neal despite Ms. Li's rule against employee fraternization. Then again, Ms. Li has proven she isn't the greatest boss in the world either.
* As revealed by Ron in ''WesternAnimation/KimPossibleMovieSoTheDrama'', the Cafeteria Lady, despite always dishing out mostly mystery meat to the disgust of the students, can ''not'' be fired.
* ''WesternAnimation/DuckTales2017'' episode, "The Great Dime Chase!" invokes this. Scrooge's accountants want to fire Gyro and Quackfaster, but Scrooge tries to defend them, claiming that they're vital employees and not as insane and dangerous as their antics seem. After Gyro's latest [[AIIsACrapshoot invention turned evil]] barges into the meeting, Scrooge goes the other way and concedes that, yes, they are insane, but they're also insane enough to seek revenge if fired. The accountants unanimously agree to keep them employed, far away from their offices.
* In ''WesternAnimation/CodenameKidsNextDoor'', Numbuh 13 seems to be universally despised by the entire organization, and for good reason. He's rude, incompetent, and a WalkingDisasterArea who causes more problems than he helps solve, and blames everyone but himself. When he's kidnapped by the villains, the good guys don't want him back, even though the villains ''want'' them to take him back. For some strange reason, however, nobody in the organization's leadership has ever considered decommissioning him.

[[folder:Real Life]]
* Until the sex abuse scandal involving former assistant coach Jerry Sandusky was made public, Penn State University football coach Joe Paterno had ''the'' ultimate job security. Minor infractions with the NCAA, disagreements with the administration, several successive poor seasons and underachieving teams ... none of that seemed to matter until Sandusky's arrest in November 2011. When the facts became clear, Paterno – who had been the head coach since 1966, and part of the coaching staff from 1950-1965 – was quickly outed for failure to show leadership and refer an alleged incident involving the sexual assault of a child (which purportedly was reported to him) to law enforcement. Sadly, Paterno died shortly after his dismissal, as apparently his job security – 62 years(!) – was the ultimate driver of his life.
* The U.S. Supreme Court. While it is technically possible to impeach and remove someone from the office of justice of the Supreme Court, the last time it was attempted was when Justice Samuel Chase was impeached in ''1804''. He was acquitted. Effectively, only [[Literature/AmericaTheBook the icy scythe of death]] snips judges out of office.
** That being said, it's not unheard of for Supreme Court justices to resign of their own volition before their term is up, usually because they are so old they can't be sure they'll survive the next President's term and don't want to die when their political opponents are in charge of replacing them.
** Impeachment (attempted or otherwise) against United States federal judges at any level is quite rare, to the point where it's basically unheard of. Eight have actually been removed, and three resigned under pressure after proceedings began.
* Most nations have some mechanism that makes it very difficult to dismiss judges, in order to prevent the executive or legislature dismissing judges who make decisions they don't like. Whilst it doesn't always translate into this trope, it can. The great British judge Lord Denning stayed on the bench until he was 83, by which point his mental faculties were...patchy.
* This mentality and how it happens in real life was lampshaded by Jaison in ''Series/{{Survivor}}: Samoa'', where he said that every job had two people like Natalie and [[EntitledBastard Russell Hantz]]. Russell Hantz was that person who was very good at the job but is ''clearly'' not working there to make friends, and is naturally the person who only cares about work and nothing more. Natalie meanwhile is the person who's there to make friends and is invited to all the office parties - and keeps the morale going because people ''want'' to work with them.
* Computer programmers sometimes jokingly call poor coding practices and examples thereof "Job Security". The reasoning is that they can't fire you if you're the only one who understands the code enough to maintain it.
** This concept is known as "The Golden Handcuffs" by people who seriously take advantage of it, and will either code in round-about methods or maintain traps and back doors to ensure that nobody else can do their job.
*** The Golden Handcuffs actually refers to the practice of lining up incentives to an employee who may want to leave their job in a way that makes it impractical to leave. For example, an executive might be offered a deferred compensation plan or stock options that require he or she remain in their current position for ten years. Alternatively, the employee must repay a financial incentive that was given earlier, such as a hefty signing bonus. The employee ''can'' quit, but feels chained to their position by the loss of that income (and they're usually living a lifestyle that costs quite a bit at that). So it's Ultimate Employee Security. [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Golden_handcuffs Obligatory Wiki Link.]]
*** As an aside, a moment's thought will reveal the flip side of such job security: If they can't fire you, it is just as true that they can't '''promote''' you, either. Of course, people earning good money with nowhere to go but management if they get promoted may not always see this as a bad thing.
*** While people sometimes try this, in reality, it usually doesn't work; they'll simply get rid of you because the sort of person who does this is a terrible employee to begin with, and what they made usually doesn't work very well. And who is going to hire you again after that?
** It's worth noting that tech companies have gotten smart about this and will fire someone on the spot for attempting this. There are strict guidelines about code syntax to make it easy to read, and breaking them is grounds for immediate termination, precisely because they don't want to lose six months of work upon replacing the only person who understands the program. If your coding sucks and you're new or they're desperate for help, they ''may'' give you one chance to clean it up unless it's obvious that it's intentionally bad in order to give yourself job security or your bad coding resulted in something getting seriously fucked up, and even then, it's a matter of "you have one chance to make this right and stop coding like a dipshit, as we're all sick of maintaining what does work and fixing what doesn't after we figure out what you're even trying to do with it".
** In 2008, Governator Schwarzenegger ordered the firing of every temporary and part-time employee of the State of California, and the reduction of the survivors' pay to minimum wage. Only then did he discover that the only people who knew the state's payroll software well enough to implement the latter directive had been victims of the former...
** As a joke goes, programmers never retire, they just move to consulting about systems written in outdated programming languages.
** The above explains why Gerald Weinberg, in ''The Psychology of Computer Programming'' (written in the 1970s, and still applicable), states that if a programmer becomes indispensable, you should fire him immediately. On the other hand, [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michael_A._Jackson Michael A. Jackson]] tells of bosses who find indecipherable complexity a sign of genius and simple and elegant solutions just dumb luck.
** This can be a problem at the academic level if you have a professor who teaches students to find their own coding style and go with what works best for them. This is one of the ''worst'' things that you can teach; while it is good to figure out a style that works for you, it's imperative to make sure that others can understand it; professors who see bizarre coding styles as something to be embraced rather than corrected are setting students up for a long line of job-related difficulties. As many a veteran programmer has said, "you may have a style that's all yours, but I don't want to be the one who gets stuck having to maintain your shit".
* Computer System Administrators. Bitter, angry, many bordering [[BunnyEarsLawyer insanity]]. On the other hand, you don't want to fire someone who has root-access to your computer system unless you really really have to.
* Tenure for academics is not quite this, but it's very, very close. Although granting it is supposed to be based on credentials and accomplishments (and limit favoritism and arbitrary dismissals as well as foster loyalty), it's not uncommon for members of a board to try to block people they don't like from becoming tenured just because it means they'll be stuck with them as coworkers for the foreseeable future - sometimes decades.
** Example: It can take as long as seven years and $350,000 dollars to [[http://www.reason.com/news/show/36802.html fire only one incompetent teacher]] in the New York City Public Schools.
** Another example: Los Angeles Unified School District has a policy of 'housing' teachers accused of being unfit for their jobs - placing them on indefinite paid leave, as opposed to firing them or putting them in non-teaching duties (this is based upon management's interpretation of the teacher contract, and, well, not wanting people to do jobs they aren't qualified for). A 2009 case involved Matthew Kim, a former Special Education teacher with Cerebral Palsy, who had been on the payroll for seven years since being removed from teaching over a sexual harassment accusal, costing the school district $2 million in salary and legal fees over that time without either teaching or otherwise performing work for LA Unified (though, to be clear, much of that figure comes from the murky results of the lawsuit Kim filed alleging he had been specifically targeted because of his handicapped status). Of course, the counter-argument is that ''accused'' is the key word, and that any public employee has the right to appeal to an independent body. ([[http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-teachers6-2009may06,0,1697213,full.story story]])
* It is nearly impossible to fire some people from their day jobs because they are prominent members of unions. If the company does fire them, then they can expect the union to pull out all the stops, much more so than firing a normal union member. That said, if the employee's union decides that someone else could do their job in the union better, they are no longer protected.
* In Japan, labor laws make it quite hard to outright fire an employee. So instead the company would gradually relieve the employee of duties (and the associated pay), until he resigns.
* Job security in Sweden has been criticized for being ultimate. This is not quite true - the law recognizes dismissal on the grounds of harassing your co-workers or gross misconduct - but we're talking really bad stuff here, like endangering other people. It is doubtful whether you can be fired for slacking around. If the employee in question is friends with the worker's union, most employers find it easier to buy them off, as they (the employers) will face lawsuits or strikes otherwise. Oh, and even when doing layoffs, you don't get to decide who stays and who has to go. The law says that the employee hired last has to be fired first. All this goes only for salaried workers, while temps and hourlies can be more easily laid off. And then the unions wonder why employers tend to avoid employing on a monthly basis whenever possible.
* The banking system in general: Even after a string of notorious crashes and bailouts, nearly everyone in any position of responsibility still has their job, having created a financial system so complex that no individual could neither fully understand its machinations, nor be held particularly responsible for its dysfunction, and all those who come closest are probably already employed in the system. It's a really, really crappy situation for anyone not in such a position. Which is to say, pretty much every other taxpayer.
** This is also VetinariJobSecurity: any other system to manage financing in a modern economy would be just as complicated.
* Public jobs in Brazil: you're unlikely to get fired unless you royally screw things up (e.g. are caught stealing from your workplace).
** Likewise ''fonctionnaires'' (civil servants) in France. The general perception being that they do no work and have a truckload of perks, but are essentially impossible to fire.
** A lot of the problems with Greece's finances stem from their civil servants enjoying this trope.
** It is also present in Germany, but is compensated for with civil servants being forbidden from unionizing and having to accept whatever the government feels like paying them.
** And in Britain, much to the chagrin of the British military, who usually bear the brunt of budget cuts and are known for having GeorgeJetsonJobSecurity. After a cock-up left the British Army with a completely useless assault rifle, they nicknamed it "the Civil Servant": it doesn't work and it can't be fired.
** Note that this can also lead to frustration among the public servants themselves, at least the ones who care about actually doing a good job. The {{Beleaguered Bureaucrat}}s who are forced to spend a lot of time cleaning up the messes their coworkers make would be just as happy to see the incompetents shown the door, rather than have to keep putting up with them.
* Hans-Ulrich Lutz, a pilot with the now-defunct Swiss airline Crossair, managed to keep his job despite several on-the-job blunders-such as retracting the landing gear of a plane while it was still on the ground and nearly landing at the wrong airport due to a navigation error. Unfortunately, this would come back to bite Crossair when Lutz [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crossair_Flight_3597 crashed a plane near Zurich]], killing himself along with 23 other passengers and crew.
* Monarchy. There is often [[OffWithHisHead only one way]] to fire a monarch. Hopefully they KnowWhenToFoldEm.
* This is quoted as one of the main reasons of unemployment in private companies in France. Nobody wants to hire because, unless your employee commits an EpicFail that potentially endangers the company or actively tries to sink it, you have to go through a precise legal procedure where even a tiny mistake (such as sending a letter too soon) can result in a trial against you (the guy will still need a very good lawyer in case of a major blunder, though). If the employee can prove he/she's been fired due to a bias of the employer (discrimination, minor fault, etc.), in 99 cases out of 100, you'll have to re-hire the employee or pay very large fines and severance packages.
* James St. James, a Millikin University professor who turned out to have murdered his father, mother and sister back when he was 15, yet was allowed to keep his job and remained popular with his students even after this fact was revealed.
* Averted in characteristic fashion in the Soviet Union under Stalin - the idea was that if anyone made themselves indispensable, it was time to dispense of them because they were working against Soviet ideals and trying to take advantage of others and their expertise. But it was more like Stalin wanted to get rid of anyone who could ever hope to be a threat. This caused predictable problems in fields like wartime intelligence.
** This backfired horribly when the Germans invaded in World War II. The competent military leaders had all been purged or reassigned to Siberia as it was assumed they posed a threat. When the Germans invaded, the results were disastrous, and only the size of the Soviet Union kept them from being overrun. After the war, most were quickly reassigned back, but some like Marshal Zhukov were too good, and popular, to get rid of.
* Shepard "Shep" Smith, anchor for right-leaning Creator/FoxNews, has no qualms whatsoever about challenging the party line on an astonishingly regular basis and making conservative and liberal guests alike look like idiots when they don't have their facts straight, including calling out Republican Senators for blocking the 9/11 First Responders' healthcare bill, asking why so many Republicans are firmly seating themselves "on the wrong side of history" regarding gay marriage, harshly condemning Fox's spreading of panic about ebola, using a PrecisionFStrike to punctuate his vehement opposition to [[JackBauerInterrogationTechnique torture]], and utterly debunking the idea that climate change isn't real. Virtually every clip of him on Website/YouTube has at least one comment wondering why he hasn't been fired yet. He is also responsible for the highest-rated show on the channel (and the second- or third-highest-rated news show ''on TV''), polled as the second-most-respected news anchor in the country, and has been with Fox News since there's ''been'' a Fox News. He really is ''just that good''.
-->'''Shep Smith''': Our talk shows are what they are. This is the news.
* Jeff Fisher, Head Coach of the St. Louis/LA Rams and, before them, the Houston Oilers/Tennessee Titans. With the exception of two seasons, he's been a Head Coach since 1995. In that time, he has had 6 playoff appearances (of which he's lost 3 times in the first round). He's had a .500 record or lower in 16 of his seasons as a head coach. He has also not had a record above .500 since 2008, spanning his final 2 seasons in Tennessee, and his last 4 in St. Louis/LA, and not including the current (2016) season. Overall, his coaching record with both is barely above .500. For comparison, following the 2015 season, former Giants head coach Tom Coughlin was fired (or rather asked to resign) for having 3 consecutive sub-.500 seasons and 1 playoff appearance in 7 years, despite having won 2 Super Bowls with the Giants. In 2016, Jeff Fisher received a contract extension in the middle of what will be a 5th consecutive sub-.500 season with the Rams.
-->'''Eric Dickerson''': I’ll say it again; where are the [[{{blackmail}} naked pictures]]? Who has them? Because something is going on here to hire this guy back again for another two seasons.
* A rather negative example of this trope. Until Buzzfeed published an article about it during the fallout of the Harvey Weinstein scandal, this was the case with former Creator/DCComics editor Eddie Berganza. He was a serial sexual-harasser, and was reported to their HR department, but very little action was taken against him. This went on for over a ''decade'' until the aforementioned article gave DC enough of a bad publicity to ''finally'' fire him in November 2017.