Is verbal job offer binding?

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Is verbal job offer binding?

I received a verbal job offer
over the phone with salary and
start date clearly stated. I
accepted it over the phone but
after two weeks the company
emailed me that they won’t
proceed due to some external
circumstances. I wrapped up my
job search once I accepted the
offer and now I need to start
over again after wasting my time.
I just read there was a precedent
like this McCann v Snozone Ltd
2016 and the company had to pay
a month salary as a compensation
for ‘breaking the contract’. Is
it real?

Asked on February 7, 2017 under Employment Labor Law, Alaska

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

Unfortunately, an oral (that's the better term for an unwritten) job offer is not enforceable or binding. For that matter, even a written job offer is not binding unless it takes the form of actual employment contract, which, among other things, requires that there be a duration in writing (e.g. a one-year offer, a two-year, a five-year, etc.). Without a written employment contract, all employment in this country is "employment at will": it may be rescinded or terminated at any time by the employer, for any reason.


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