If my boss promised me a promotion but he was fired for other reasons, what do I do now?

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If my boss promised me a promotion but he was fired for other reasons, what do I do now?

The promise was verbal; when I asked my area ops manager he said no.

Asked on April 11, 2012 under Employment Labor Law, Mississippi


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

The law does not enforce gratuituos promises. A gratuitious promise is one made without the exchange or receipt of "consideration," which is something of value given in exchange for the promise. If you had to do or give up something in exchange for the promised promotion, such as--

Assumed extra responsibilities, worked extra hours, or accepted a transfer to a different location

Paid money to take training or educational classes, or acquire some certification

Gave up other job opportunties (which your employer was aware you were doing)

--you may be able to enforce the promise, as either a contract (because there was an exchange of consideration--you did or provided something for the promise) or  under the theory of "promissory estoppel" (you relied to your detriment on the promise, when the employer had knowledge that you would do so).

However, without having done, provided, or given up something of value, then this was a gratuitous promise, which is not binding or enforceable, and the area operations manager may disclaim or renege on it.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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