Can I sue someone who hired me and never followed up for training only to say they hired someone else?

UPDATED: Aug 7, 2012

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Can I sue someone who hired me and never followed up for training only to say they hired someone else?

I was told that I was hired, and was shown all the daily things I would be doing, and said to wait for a follow up phone call for a training appointment. Never called, and when I called him, he says that he has hired someone else because they were bilingual.

Asked on August 7, 2012 under Employment Labor Law, New Jersey


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Typically, a job offer or promise of a job is not enforceable, and also an employer may fire someone who lacks an employment contract at any time, even immediately after hiring. Normally, therefore, you would not have any recourse.

If all of the following are met, however, you may be able to enforce the promise of a job under the theory of "promissory estoppel"; if you think this is the case, you should consult with an employment law attorney about your situation.

1) The employer promised you a job.

2) In order for you to take the job, you had to do something concrete and significant to your detriment, such as leaving an existing job or relocating.

3) The employer knew or must have known that you would do that thing to your detriment, but knowing that, still chose to make you the job offer.

4) It was reasonable to rely on the offer (i.e. it looked like a good offer).

5) You did in fact rely on the offer to your detriment.

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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