What kind of language in an employee handbook/manual may create an implied employment contract?

Author: Melanie Perez-Vellios, VP Group, LLC

Some states have held that representations contained in the employee handbook or manual may create an enforceable implied contract where an employee reasonably relied upon those statements in accepting or continuing his or her employment. For example, statements regarding the essential terms and conditions of the employment, "just cause" provisions providing that employees will be terminated only for cause, and progressive discipline provisions, have been found to create an enforceable implied contract.