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ERIC Number: ED279274
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1987
Reference Count: 0
Employment at Will. A Guide to an Eroding Doctrine.
Shepard, Ira M.; And Others
The development of the employment-at-will doctrine is explored, along with the statutory and judicial limitations that have been steadily imposed on this common-law theory. Under the at-will doctrine, an employee who is hired for an indefinite period is subject to discharge for any reason, good or bad. An estimated two-thirds of the national work force is not covered by either labor contracts or protective legislation. The following exceptions to the at-will doctrine, that have been adopted by some states, are considered: public-policy exception, implied-contract exception, and implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing exception. Suggestions to help managers develop predischarge strategies to minimize potential liability concern: the hiring process, employment policies and practices, and termination procedures. Included is a chart that provides a state-by-state analysis of applicable exceptions to the employment-at-will doctrine. Court decisions are indicated for each state, along with whether public-policy, implied-contract, or good-faith covenant exceptions have or have not been recognized. A statement of the scope of the policy, or theoretical basis for the court's decision, is included. (SW)
Descriptors: Compliance (Legal), Court Litigation, Dismissal (Personnel), Employer Employee Relationship, Employment Practices, Higher Education, Personnel Policy, Personnel Selection, Public Policy
College and University Personnel Association, 11 Dupont Circle, Suite 120, Washington, DC 20036.
Publication Type: Reference Materials - Directories/Catalogs; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Administrators; Policymakers; Practitioners
Authoring Institution: College and Univ. Personnel Association, Washington, DC.