UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022
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I was leaving my job for a higher paying
position when I was counteroffered to
stay with a guarantee until January.
They hired someone for my position and
demoted me after only a month without
warning. Is that a breach of contract?
Asked on October 20, 2017 under Employment Labor Law, North Carolina
SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney
Answered 5 years ago | Contributor
It would be a breach of contract if there was a contract. In the employment context, all employment is "employment at will," which means that the employer can demote, reduce pay, change your position or responsibilities, or even terminate you at any time, for any reason, even after promising you something else. Only if there was a written contract, guarantying your position and compensation for a given or set period of time (such as a one-year contract) which has not yet expired do you have enforceable contractual rights. Without a contract, any promises are unenforceable.
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