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socrateaser, Lawyer
Category: California Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 39050
Experience:  Retired (mostly)
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My friend worked at the same company for 19 years About 10

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My friend worked at the same company for 19 years About 10 years ago they had a layoff and he wasnt one of them and the vice president told him then that he was like a fixture there and would have his job as long as he (vice pres) was there. He got a raise in January of this year and then they layed him off in May. The reason they told him he was layed off was because he made too much money. Since there was a verbal agreement between him and the vice president about never being layed off and then the vice president layed him off. The vice president is still working there. Is this reason for a law suit? They told him to take all his tools so he knew he wasnt coming back. He asked why he was being layed off and their only reason was that he made too much money.
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: California Employment Law
Expert:  socrateaser replied 5 years ago.
In the absence of an express agreement stating employment is "at will," employees may rebut the statutory presumption of at-will employment by proving the existence of an implied-in-fact promise not to discharge without good cause.

Such a contract may be proved by a course of conduct, including oral representations. Foley v. Interactive Data Corp. (1988) 47 Cal.3d 654, 675-676; Guz v. Bechtel Nat'l, Inc. (2000) 24 Cal.4th 317, 337; Stillwell v. Salvation Army (2008) 167 Cal.App.4th 360, 380 (existence of implied-in-fact contract requiring good cause for termination is question for trier of fact).

So, if the VP told the employee that he would never be fired while the VP worked there, then that could be an enforceable contract, which would give your friend a lawsuit for the termination.

If your friend wants to explore this further, then for an employment rights lawyer referral, see this link.

Hope this helps.

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Customer: replied 5 years ago.
I'm still reading the answer
Expert:  socrateaser replied 5 years ago.
No worries.
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