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Terms of Employment: Virginia

Terms of Employment requirements for other states

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

Author: Marc Smith, Smith, Lease & Goldstein, LLC


  • Virginia's Human Rights Act prohibits employment discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, pregnancy, childbirth or related medical conditions, age, marital status and disability. See Virginia's Antidiscrimination Laws.
  • Virginia law also requires employers not covered by the Fair Labor Standards Act to provide employees with equal pay irrespective of gender. See Virginia's Antidiscrimination Laws.
  • Employers are not permitted to request, require or administer a genetic test to any person as a condition of employment. Further, employers cannot refuse to hire, fail to promote, discharge or otherwise adversely affect an employee or prospective employee solely on the basis of a genetic characteristic or results of a genetic test, regardless of how the employer obtained the information. See Genetic Testing.
  • Employees who have been victims of crime have the right to leave work and attend criminal proceedings relating to the crime against the employee. See Leave for Victims of Crime.
  • In Virginia, the employment relationship is presumed to be at-will, and may be terminated by either the employer or employee at any time. See At-Will Employment.
  • Generally, covenants not to compete are enforceable in Virginia, provided they are supported by adequate consideration and are reasonable in terms of the period of restriction and geographic scope. See Restrictive Covenants.
  • Virginia has adopted the Uniform Trade Secrets Act, which prohibits the misappropriation of an employer's trade secrets. See Trade Secrets Act.