Can I sue a company for leading me on to believe that I will be employed?

UPDATED: Mar 9, 2012

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Can I sue a company for leading me on to believe that I will be employed?

I am currently an intern for a corporation and have been for over two years now. When enquired about the status of my employment the general manager responded by telling me “its getting processed now” “its going through the approval process now” “I’m pushing for this month”, “we are close”this has been going on since for 10 months. I am getting fed up and would like to seek legal advice. I feel like I am treated unfairly and taken advantage of. Also, this company prevented me from other options with much better pay than this.

Asked on March 9, 2012 under Employment Labor Law, Alaska


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

Generally, a company is not forced to hire a person, even if they indicated that they probably would, and there is no liability for their failing to hire.

You write that they "prevented" you from taking other options with better pay. IF it was the case that the company knew you had other options--not merely the possibility of looking for a different position, but actual job offers or at least interviews--and knowing that, promised you employment to get you to forego those options and stay with them; you relied on that promise and did give up the other options; and it was reasonable for you to rely on the promise...then if all those criteria are filled, you may be able to enforce the promise. If you think this is the case, you should consult with an employment law attorney to discuss the matter in greater depth and explore your options.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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