Employment Offer: Michigan
Federal law and guidance on this subject should be reviewed together with this section.
Author: William Pilchak
- Offer letters must be prepared to preserve at-will employment status unless the employer consciously decides otherwise. See Preserving At-Will Status.
- Many employers use written acceptance of the employer's offer to confirm that the employee agrees to conditions of employment favorable to the employer, such as use of arbitration, a shortened statute of limitations, or adherence with confidentiality or noncompete agreements. See Obtaining Agreement on Terms in the Acceptance of the Offer.
- Employers are statutorily prohibited from requiring applicants to pay the cost of employment upon the employee, including the cost of medical examinations, photographs or fingerprinting, or any promise to repay the cost of employment, such as the value of training received if employment does not continue. See Cost-Shifting Provisions Prohibited.
- In Michigan, an offer of at-will employment may be withdrawn at any time without implication even if the applicant has resigned employment and moved to Michigan in order to fill the position. See Withdrawing Offers.
- Providing inaccurate information about the prospect of employment or failing to disclose information upon the applicant's inquiry could form the basis for a common law fraud action. See Fraud in the Offer.
- Michigan courts will hold that a promise of a future fringe benefit to be provided after a period of service will "vest" contract rights in the employee upon that period of service, much like a pension. As such, care should be taken to avoid promising benefits unless that is intended. See Promises of Vested Benefits.
- When making an employment offer to salespersons, employers should carefully state the commission plan or agreement because a contractual right to lifetime commissions may result under the procuring cause doctrine and Michigan's Sales Representative Commission Act. See Avoiding Unintended Commission Contracts.