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LEGAL DICTIONARY

Employment At-Will

Employment At-Will is a legal definition that indicates that an employee can be terminated at any moment without a specific reason. Similarly, the terms of their contract can also be altered in the same manner.

If an employee at-will wishes to quit, they are also able to leave without providing any explanation or reasoning. However, this type of employment gives little recourse to any individual that wants to fight their termination.

This is because an employer will not need to show any just cause when proving that the termination was legal. An at-will employee can only fight termination if the employer violates labor regulations or their worker rights.

Even though many employees are not aware that they are at-will, this type of arrangement has been growing in popularity in recent years because of the flexibility it affords both parties. Read on to learn how employment at-will works in practice.

At-Will Employment Exceptions

There are some situations that may require employers or employees to follow more rigid rules than what is generally necessary for an employment at-will .

Some of the most common of these situations are outlined below:

  • Employment contracts: if an employee has a fixed employment contract they may have more defined labor rights than the usual at-will employee.
  • Public policy: certain states may have public policy exceptions prohibiting employers from firing employees in particular situations.
  • Collective bargaining agreements: an employee that is covered by this type of contract may be afforded stricter conditions of employment.
  • Covenant of good faith and fair dealing: this is a duty that is implied when two parties sign a contract. It presupposes that employers cannot fire a person in order to avoid their duties, such as paying healthcare or retirement contributions.
  • Implied contracts: employers are not allowed to fire someone that is under an implied contract, even if a legal document proving the agreement does not exist.
  • Employee handbook provisions: certain employer handbooks might state that employees are not at will and can only be fired with proper justification.

How Does Eviction Work With Employment At-Will

In situations where a landlord is also the employer of a tenant, there are certain procedures that apply in regards to eviction and other practices.

Although these vary from state to state, generally the landlord is never allowed to just immediately remove the tenant. Eviction laws typically require that the landlord has good cause to evict the tenant.

Depending on the state, there will also be regulations in place regarding the minimum amount of notice that must be given prior to eviction. However, if the landlord terminates the employment, they can immediately go to court to begin the eviction process. This generally waives the requirement to provide an eviction notice to the tenant in advance.

How Do I Document Employment At-Will in My Business?

Technically, it is not necessary for you to document that your employees are at-will. However, many employers note this down in their employee handbooks to help prevent disputes in the future.

Some companies also have employees sign a document stating they are at-will employees and that they agree to all the conditions that are related to this status. This can be helpful to avoid conflicts, but even without signing this agreement, the default rule is that employees are at-will.


Create an At-Will Employment Agreementt

Employment At-Will is a legal definition that indicates that an employee can be terminated at any moment without a specific reason. Similarly, the terms of their contract can also be altered in the same manner.

If an employee at-will wishes to quit, they are also able to leave without providing any explanation or reasoning. However, this type of employment gives little recourse to any individual that wants to fight their termination.

This is because an employer will not need to show any just cause when proving that the termination was legal. An at-will employee can only fight termination if the employer violates labor regulations or their worker rights.

Even though many employees are not aware that they are at-will, this type of arrangement has been growing in popularity in recent years because of the flexibility it affords both parties. Read on to learn how employment at-will works in practice.

At-Will Employment Exceptions

There are some situations that may require employers or employees to follow more rigid rules than what is generally necessary for an employment at-will .

Some of the most common of these situations are outlined below:

  • Employment contracts: if an employee has a fixed employment contract they may have more defined labor rights than the usual at-will employee.
  • Public policy: certain states may have public policy exceptions prohibiting employers from firing employees in particular situations.
  • Collective bargaining agreements: an employee that is covered by this type of contract may be afforded stricter conditions of employment.
  • Covenant of good faith and fair dealing: this is a duty that is implied when two parties sign a contract. It presupposes that employers cannot fire a person in order to avoid their duties, such as paying healthcare or retirement contributions.
  • Implied contracts: employers are not allowed to fire someone that is under an implied contract, even if a legal document proving the agreement does not exist.
  • Employee handbook provisions: certain employer handbooks might state that employees are not at will and can only be fired with proper justification.

How Does Eviction Work With Employment At-Will

In situations where a landlord is also the employer of a tenant, there are certain procedures that apply in regards to eviction and other practices.

Although these vary from state to state, generally the landlord is never allowed to just immediately remove the tenant. Eviction laws typically require that the landlord has good cause to evict the tenant.

Depending on the state, there will also be regulations in place regarding the minimum amount of notice that must be given prior to eviction. However, if the landlord terminates the employment, they can immediately go to court to begin the eviction process. This generally waives the requirement to provide an eviction notice to the tenant in advance.

How Do I Document Employment At-Will in My Business?

Technically, it is not necessary for you to document that your employees are at-will. However, many employers note this down in their employee handbooks to help prevent disputes in the future.

Some companies also have employees sign a document stating they are at-will employees and that they agree to all the conditions that are related to this status. This can be helpful to avoid conflicts, but even without signing this agreement, the default rule is that employees are at-will.


Create an At-Will Employment Agreementt