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Rescinding a job offer

 
#1 Rescinding a job offer
14/05/2009 09:56

Peter

Hello,

If you were to sign a job contract but then decide to rescind the job offer in favour of another job; would you be legally liable for anything?

For example, if the job offer you rescinded had a 3 month notice period, would you have to serve that before moving on to your preferred job?

Thanks,

Peter

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#2 RE: Rescinding a job offer
14/05/2009 10:33

jj to Peter (#1)

In law you are obliged contractually to work the 3 months. Therefore you should offer (reluctantly) to do this to avoid being sued for breach of contract.

In practice unlikely they will insist. I have never heard it happen.

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#3 RE: Rescinding a job offer
14/05/2009 11:12

anon to jj (#2)

this has been discussed before on this forum at much length, and so I understood that until you set foot on your first day you weren't obliged to work, something to do with the legal definition of supply of a service (i.e. you) vs supply of a product

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#4 RE: Rescinding a job offer
14/05/2009 12:09

Mars A Day to anon (#3)

Anon is quite right: until you physically set foot on company property you don't actually have a contract in place as it's a contract of services.

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#5 RE: Rescinding a job offer
14/05/2009 12:39

Wondering? to Mars A Day (#4)

How about training contracts like law or ACA or whatever else exists - does that change anything? I have heard scare stories about people having to pay training costs back, but have the feeling that these are largely ficitional.

I couldn't see a large firm demanding money off a debt laden law grad.

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#6 RE: Rescinding a job offer
14/05/2009 12:52

jj to Wondering? (#5)

A contractor has a contract for services. However an employment contract is different and is not a "contract for services".

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#7 RE: Rescinding a job offer
14/05/2009 13:21

Derek to jj (#6)

A couple of confusing posts on this thread now.

For clarification, Mars is correct - as a prospective employee (i.e. not a contractor), until you physically set foot on company property you don't actually have a contract in place.

Peter - if you have not started your job, you have no legal liability whatever, just a communications issue on the best way to tell the co whose offer you had originally accepted.

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#8 RE: Rescinding a job offer
14/05/2009 13:30

Curious to Derek (#7)

Interesting, what if an accountancy firm paid for you do Post Grad quals before you joined and then you choose not to join? Can they demand money back?

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#9 RE: Rescinding a job offer
14/05/2009 13:48

Wondering? to Curious (#8)

I'm not sure about that situation, by I have heard myths of accountancy firms demanding ACA training costs if people leave early. Which doesn't make sense, as they could leave at the end of the contract anyway.

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#10 RE: Rescinding a job offer
14/05/2009 14:19

Village Idiot to Derek (#7)

Wow, there are some people here with a hazy understanding of contract law.

Regardless of what the law says, no company wants someone working for them who does not want to be there. Moreover, they do not want to spend the money to onboard you only to have to roll you off again.

Write to them, telling them that you have changed your mind / circumstances / whatever. Nothing will happen, but just be aware that you are unlikely ever to get a job with that company in the future. Also remember that the consulting world is a small place -- you may come across these people again in your career, and they may remember that you wasted their time and left them in a lurch.

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#11 RE: Rescinding a job offer
14/05/2009 20:19

nm to Curious (#8)

A condition of training contracts is that you pay back the fees/pay for training if you leave within x years. Sometimes the amount you'd have to pay is on a sliding scale and the fees are "amortized" over the course of your employment.

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