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    3 Replies Latest reply on Jan 18, 2010 8:58 PM by DebbyBlitzLoc

    Any Legal Issues for Layingoff an Employee?

    smallbuziness Newbie
      Due to the recent budget cuts, I'm forced to layoff one of my two employees. They are both excellent workers and I don't want to let anyone go, but I can't afford to keep them both. The one employee has been with me for 5 months. She signed a one year contract to work for me. We talked about having her work for me on a contract basis. This way I only pay her for the work she does and she is able to stay and work for me, which is what she wants. I gave her the contract to sign and have asked for it several times over the course of two weeks. I gave her a deadline of signing the contract. The deadline has passed and she has not signed it. I'm not sure what to do at this point. I know I will have to lay her off soon because I have no money left to pay her. Are there any legal issues that I am against if I do lay her off? What do I need to do before, during and after laying her off? I'm in the process of getting a small business loan to keep her, but if it doesn't go through I want to be prepared and be able to pull the trigger.

      Thank you.
        • Re: Any Legal Issues for Layingoff an Employee?
          LUCKIEST Guide
          Laying off an Employee, Welcome

          Two suggestions. One Go to Members page and share some info

          Two, Talk to a Lawyer.
          • Re: Any Legal Issues for Layingoff an Employee?
            benthere Newbie

            It all comes back to whatever the contract says that you and she signed. If you signed up for employing her for a year then you will probably need that loan to pay her. Otherwise try to get her to compamise by signing a modified contract. also check with the dept of labor in your state. some states are "at will" employers meaning you can lay off an employee for no cause because there is no contract for employment...hope this helps
            • Re: Any Legal Issues for Layingoff an Employee?
              DebbyBlitzLoc Adventurer

              The simple fact that she has neglected to sign the new contract would concern me. I would highly suggest you open up the communication here and talk to her! Find out why she chose to ignore the deadline you gave her. She may be thinking that by not signing, she cannot be layed off and end up without an income. However, in most states (as someone else noted) people are employed under an "at will" understanding, meaning they can be laid off without cause. Depending upon the original contract you had this employee sign, you may end up having to pay her for the entire year. The only way to know for sure is to contact a lawyer and find out what the law says in your state. I suggest you do that immediately and also talk to this employee, perhaps the two of you can work something out that will be mutually agreeable.