Is a verbal employment that has been standing for more than three years be arbitrarily changed to include a contingency?

Q: I answered a job ad specifying a salary of $40,000 per year, accepted the job at that salary and now 3-1/2 years later the employer wishes to change the compensation to match whatever amount we receive through a contract with another party, which is less than $40,000. Can I challenge that? Is a verbal employment agreement a valid contract?

A: In Arizona a verbal employment contract is “at will,” which means that either party can terminate it at any time. Most likely the employer can therefore lower your pay if the employer wants to. Your only recourse would be to quit and find another job.

* This answer does not constitute legal advice. I am admitted in the State of Arizona only. This advice is based on general principles of law that may or may not relate to your specific situation. Facts and laws change and these possible changes will affect the advice provided here. You should not rely on this advice alone, and nothing in these communications creates an attorney-client relationship.

Published By:

Gunderson, Denton & Peterson, P.C.
1930 N. Arboleda, Suite 201
Mesa, Arizona 85213
Office: 480-655-7440
Fax: 480-655-7099

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Re-posted from AVVO Legal Questions & Answers.

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