Employee handbooks typically outline an employer’s expectations, as well as the consequences an employee may expect if they fail to meet the employer’s expectations. However, employee handbooks may also outline other important information, including:
- an employer’s overtime policy;
- the benefits offered by the employer;
- various types of leave available to employees;
- guidelines for employee performance reviews;
- the expected process for an employee to resign from their position; and
- policies for promotion, termination, and transfers.
Employees should be able to rely on the language in the handbook and be confident that, if they avoid the prohibited conduct listed in the handbook, they will not be unfairly disciplined or terminated. Similarly, an employee should be able to rely on the listed benefits and procedures outlined in an employee handbook throughout the course of their employment. However, that is not always the case.
Routinely, Texas employers terminate employees for conduct not listed as prohibited or discouraged in an employee handbook. Similarly, it is not uncommon for an employer to renege on the benefits mentioned in an employee handbook or otherwise not follow the procedures outlined in an employee handbook. When this occurs, an employee may be able to pursue an employment claim against their employer.