What to do about a job offer that never materializes?

I was offered a job by a company and accepted. They asked me to start the next daybut when the next day came, they asked to re-shedule for the following Friday. Then they moved it to a Monday and then to a Friday again. They have been leading me on and have kept me from being able to find a job do to the fact of a promise of reschedule which has been broken may times. What should I do?

Asked on July 31, 2012 under Employment Labor Law, Virginia


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

Generally speaking, if you were not given an actual employment contract with a start date, the employer may change or even renege on its offer. If you did something significant to  your detriment to accept the offer--such as put in notice at an existing job; relocated--and the employer knew you would do that but made the offer anyway, that can sometimes be enough to make the offer enforceable under the theory of "promissory estoppel." But it must be something concrete, not speculative (so stopping your job search is not enough); it must be detrimental; and the employer must have known or reasonably should have known you'd do this. If you  think this may have been the case, consult with an employment law attorney to explore your recourse.

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