Do at-will laws apply if you have a contract? 

Do at-will laws apply if you have a contract? 

On Behalf of | Feb 16, 2022 | Wrongful termination |

You know that most workers at your company are at-will employees. When you took the job, however, you didn’t want to be governed by these laws. You didn’t want your employer to be able to fire you without a reason, for example, and you wanted a bit more stability.

To get that, you signed an employment contract. Since you have this in writing, do the at-will employment laws still apply? Can your employer still fire you and then claim that they haven’t violated the law?

The at-will laws are modified by contract

The best way to think of at-will employment laws is as a default. In the absence of all other agreements, these are the base laws that employers have to follow. Essentially, it just means that they have a lot of freedom as long as they don’t discriminate.

But these regulations can be modified through the use of a contract, and then they no longer apply. For example, your contract may say that you can only be fired for cause. This means that your employer is now legally obligated to have a justifiable reason to terminate your position. They cannot do it simply because they want to hire someone else. This gives you the stability that you’re looking for.

If your employer does break that contract, they may not have broken the base employment laws, but they have still violated your rights. Don’t let them use the at-will employment laws as a shield against this. They no longer apply. You need to know about all of the legal steps you can take if you have been treated in this manner.