Here’s a common-sense ruling: Applicants and employees can’t simply assume they won’t get a job and then sue when the self-fulfilling prophesy comes true. They must make an effort to get the job when it’s clear how to apply.
Recent case: Mary, an accounting professor at Elizabeth City State University, worked for years on a series of renewable contracts. She preferred working term-to-term, and made it clear she didn’t want tenure.
However, when her contract wasn’t renewed, she sued, alleging race and age discrimination.
Her case was dismissed when it was clear she never bothered applying for a long-term, tenure-track job. (Jackson-Heard v. Elizabeth City State University, et al., No. 2:12-CV-8, ED NC, 2013)
Final note: Always note when an employee says she isn’t interested in an opening. Plus, make sure the application process is easy to use.
- At-will employment remains alive and well in Pennsylvania
- Fairness, careful documentation are key to discipline process that will stand up in court
- Steer the interview back on track if applicant strays
- Get ready now! New ADAAA regs will mean more litigation
- Special performance measures deviate from usual practice? Be sure to document reason