Employment At-Will: Montana
Federal law and guidance on this subject should be reviewed together with this section.
Author: Jason S. Ritchie and William R. Dabney, Holland & Hart LLP
- In Montana, there is no presumption of at-will employment after employees have completed a required probationary period. Montana's Wrongful Discharge From Employment Act (WDEA) is the primary remedy for individuals who claim they were wrongfully discharged from employment. See The At-Will Relationship.
- Given the protections afforded by the WDEA, it is difficult for Montana employees to argue for implied contracts based on verbal exchanges. However, employers are restricted in their ability to violate express written provisions found in employee handbooks. See Employment At-Will Exceptions.
- In addition to the WDEA, at-will employees in Montana may file claims against their employers under tort theories, including intentional infliction of emotional distress and defamation, so long as the plaintiff employee is able to satisfy an evidentiary burden. See Tort Considerations.