What to Do When a Job Offer is Withdrawn

How to Handle a Revoked Job Offer

What happens when a company decides that they don't need you - after they have already offered you a job? What rights do those whose job offers have been revoked have, what recourse is there, and what happens to signing bonuses or advances once an offer has been rescinded?

Unfortunately, you don't have many legal rights. That's why it's important to carefully evaluate the job offer and the company before you accept the offer to try and ensure the the offer is going to hold up.

The last thing you want to do is quit your job and, perhaps relocate, only to find out you don't have a new job to go.

Mimi Moore, Partner in the Chicago office of Bryan Cave LLP, shares her expertise on the steps to take when you have been offered a new job and the offer is rescinded.

First of all, it's important to be aware that from a legal perspective you don't have many rights. That's because most states are employment at will, which means that the company doesn't have to have a reason to terminate your employment. The same logic holds true for prospective employees.

There are steps you can take to protect yourself in the eventuality the job offer is withdrawn:

  • Ask what the chances are of the job offer being revoked and ask what the company has done when it's happened. The company's past track record is a good indicator of what might happen and the company may have a plan in place.
  • Ask if the job offer letter can reflect what the company will do if the job offer is withdrawn.
  • If there is a signing bonus or an advance, ask what will happen to them. Ask if the job offer letter can make it clear that you can keep them if your offer is revoked.
  • Let the employer know that you want to know as soon as possible if your offer is in jeopardy.

Be prepared. Research contingency plans for what you can do if the offer is withdrawn.

You may be able to negotiate other options with the company. You may be able to start part-time, work in a different area, or start later. It can't hurt to see what options might be available.

Most importantly, Mimi Moore says, is, "To to be sure that you are comfortable with the job offer and the company you are agreeing to work for."

Related Articles: Can an Employer Withdraw a Job Offer if I Counter Offer? | What is Employment at Will? | Exceptions to Employment at Will

The private web sites, and the information linked to both on and from this site, are opinion and information. While I have made every effort to link accurate and complete information, I cannot guarantee it is correct. Please seek legal assistance, or assistance from State, Federal, or International governmental resources to make certain your legal interpretation and decisions are correct. This information is not legal advice and is for guidance only.

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