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Employment At-Will: Maryland

Employment At-Will requirements for other states

Federal law and guidance on this subject should be reviewed together with this section.

Author: Darrell R. VanDeusen, Kollman & Saucier, PA


  • Maryland recognizes the employment at-will doctrine, but there have been various exceptions created by the courts over time. See Judicial Exceptions to the Employment At-Will Doctrine.
  • Maryland recognizes the employment at-will doctrine, but has various exceptions based on public policy considerations. See Examples of Terminations that Violate Public Policy.
  • Despite the existence of public policy exceptions to the employment at-will doctrine, there are some examples of terminations that either do not violate public policy or where the claim of a public policy violation is inappropriate given the circumstances. See Terminations That Did Not Violate Public Policy.
  • The effectiveness of an employee handbook or policy manual disclaimer in Maryland turns on the clarity of the disclaimer. See Employee Handbooks.
  • Maryland employers may inadvertently create legally enforceable contracts by the terms of their employee handbook provisions. See Employee Handbooks.
  • Verbal promises of permanent or lifetime employment are unenforceable in Maryland. See Verbal Contracts.
  • Maryland does not recognize the implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing in employment contracts where the employee is employed at will and for an indefinite term. See Implied Covenant of Good Faith and Fair Dealing.