Contract employee without contract

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Contract employee without contract

My husband is a contract employee. He had a 6 month to hire contract that was through a recruiter. The contract expired last week but they told him they were not going to hire full-time but to keep showing up. We are assuming that he will continue to be paid, I guess we will know come payday. What are his options for unemployment compensation, especially since he has no contract right now? If they don’t pay him or let him go all together, would he be eligible for unemployment? Is he required to stay or can/should he leave and collect unemployment while looking for a new position?

Asked on August 21, 2019 under Employment Labor Law, Pennsylvania

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 2 years ago | Contributor

While there are some exceptions, most contracts do not have to be in writing: they can be oral. When a written contract expires but the two parties continue to perform under it (e.g. he works; they pay him) an oral contract is formed which has the same terms as the prior written contract, except for duration--an oral contract can be ended at will by either side, without prior notice. So as long as they want him to work and are paying him, he is employed and is not eligible for unemployment; and if he quits, then he again will not be eligible for unemployment, because you are not eligible if you voluntarily leave work. If and when they tell him that he's not working there anymore, refuse to schedule him, etc. then he will have been terminated and could get unemployment.


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