Running head: EMPLOYMENT LAW
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“Baum v. Helget Gas Products Inc.”
Employment Law: Breach of Contract
Name of Institution
James Allen noted that if one works joyfully and peacefully with the right thoughts along with the right efforts, then one will gain the right results (Joel, 2001). The connotation may sound perfect for every individual who dreams of being employed, but as for Baum, a professional who got fired due to contractual issues—the connotation does not apply without the presence of a definite agreement from both the employer and the employee.
Laws that define the rights of employees and the sanctions that await employers that cross along the borders of these laws have been consistently spurred by union groups and activists. In the case of Baum, he made it clear before he applied for HGP—a company—that he has a set of notes and specifications on the extent of his employment if he will be hired to work for them ("Baum v. Helget Gas Products, Inc. 440 F.3d 1019," 2006). The agreement has been in a form of notes, which he critically outlined during his meeting with the president of the company. It stated that the contract of his profession would come along in three years given the salary and the job description that has been tackled in the meeting. In return, the president agreed with these specifications hence failed to sign the written agreement. It was only through the supervisor of the company that Baum’s conditions were realized into paper.
After less than a year with the company, Baum was fired by the president of the company as it contends that the employee failed to meet his expectations. As an outcome of this miscommunication—between Baum, the supervisor and the president—Baum the issue was brought into court and Baum lost in the trial. With high hopes, Baum request for an appeal to the decision. He argued that it is his right to sue the company for Breach of Contract—given that there was a written agreement to serve as a basis for his disbelief and right for a just a fair trial.
The law states that in the grounds of employment-at-will, the employer can fire an employee for no cause whatsoever, for a good cause or otherwise. Even though the details for this law have long been forsaken by employees who do not have written contracts, still, employees can fight for their rights when a clear basis for such challenge is pursued. Public-policy exception, implied-contract exception and covenant-of-good-faith exception are among the rights that an employee can fight for in his or her job (Joel, 2001). The issue with Baum as the court defines is the unclear agreement with no definite terms that has transcribed between them. Thus in the light of the fact that there was a “written agreement” between both parties, Baum sees that he still has a shot on this case on the higher court.
In this regard, the court of Missouri considers the presence of the “written agreement” and must further analyze Baum and HGP’s case. The following issues are raised: the extent of the written agreement and the specifications that were agreed upon by both parties, the clarity of the agreement with regard to the duration of work or the contract, the grounds for firing the employee and if these have not violated the rights of an employee.
The case still needs to be critically analyzed and a lot of factors are yet to be considered. The employer may have a high chance on winning the case as to the level of legality of the contract. But the supervisor—who plays a big role in the scenario—also needs to be addressed. The court may also consider Baum’s part, as to how he has worked for the company and the legality of the ‘written agreement’ in terms of employment rights. It may also be possible the he has not been oriented by the company or either the company took advantage of the applicant’s innocence when it comes to contracts. The verdict on this case lies on the jury on hard evidences.
Baum v. Helget Gas Products, Inc. 440 F.3d 1019 (8th Cir. 2006).
Joel, L. G. I. (2001). Every Employee's Guide to the Law (Rev Upd Su ed.). New York, NY: Pantheon.
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