In this next situation, it wasn't the reason for the termination that got the employer hung up, but the procedure for terminating an employee: An employer gave out a handbook that details a specific process for terminating an employee.But when the employer terminated an employee, it did not use the procedure in the handbook.But there are other things that you may want to put in your handbook as well.The following is a list of the types of information that can be put in a handbook.This employment relationship is known as employment at will.Besides allowing you to terminate employees "at will," the employment-at-will doctrine allows you to change benefits or employment practices whenever you deem appropriate.The following is an example of an effective disclaimer: This Employee Handbook does not represent contractual terms of employment.
Just having a disclaimer, however, will not ensure that your handbook won't be considered a contract — it must be very carefully worded.
Your freedom to end an employee's employment and to modify benefits and employment practices "at will" is limited, however, where a contract exists that imposes a limit.
And, if you're not careful in how you word your employee handbook, the handbook may be found to be a binding contract.
Increasingly, employees are suing their employers under a breach of contract theory when the employers fail to follow procedures outlined in their employee handbooks.
Many courts will find an implied employment contract in the handbook for employees who prove that they relied on the handbook and its promises.