What are my rights if I was hired by a staffing agency to work for a nursing triage agency as a case manager so I quit my job but now have not been given the new position?

I gave my previous employer notice 10/23. I was to start my new job 10/26. It was postponed to 10/27. When I reported to work for that day I was told that the staffing agency jumped the gun and the position is not available. I was then told that I could start in a couple of days as an administrative assistant. I still have not started and have been unemployed and out of an income. When I asked if I could be compensated for the wait time the agency declines to respond.
Is there legal action I can take for the loss of my job and wage?
thank you

Candice Young

Asked on November 4, 2015 under Employment Labor Law, Arizona

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

Generally, employment is employment at will: not only can you be fired at any time, for any reason (or suspended, etc.), but you could have a promised position taken away or held in abeyance. That said, you *may* be able to sue under a theory of promissory estoppel. Promissory estoppel will enforce promises (such as of a new job) when all the following criteria are met:
1) Someone promised you something, like a job;
2) The promise was reasonable (no reason to distrust it);
3) They person promising you knew that to take them up on it, you'd have to do something to your detriment, like leaving an existing job (e.g. they knew you were currently employed and would quit for the new job);
4) Despite knowing the above, they promised you anyway;
5) You reasonably relied on the promise and did that thing to your detriment (quit the job).
When all 5 criteria are met, you may be eligible for compensation. You may wish to speak with an employment law attorney or a litigator (someone who handles law suits) to discuss the situation and your options in more detail.


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