- Employees who work without the benefit of an employment contract are employed
"at-will." An employer may discharge an at-will employee at any time for any
reason that is not contrary to statute or that is not inconsistent with any representation
that the employer has made to the employee.
- One exception to the "at-will" doctrine is the contractual claim of an
"implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing." Every contract contains an
implied duty of good faith and fair dealing including contracts terminable at-will.
- A discharged employee has a claim for a bad faith termination of an at-will employment
contract if he can show that:
- the discharge involved an intent by an employer to benefit financially at the employee's
expense, such as for the purpose of retaining for itself sales commissions which would
otherwise be due to the employee; or
- the termination violates a clearly established public policy that does not have its own
mechanism for redress.
- Another way in which an employee can avoid the "at will" status is by arguing
that he has a contract of employment based upon an employee manual or an employer policy
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