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Brief of Breach of Employment Contract case

(Name (Professor (Subject )xx November 2007 Breach of Employment Contract Case : Baril v . Aiken Regional Medical Centers .Opinion No . 35tate of South Carolina The case involves a claim that Baril , the appellant , was dismissed by Aiken Regional Medical Centers , the Hospital where she previously worked , and such dismissal constitutes a breach of the employment contract between Baril and the Hospital . The contract the parties were referring to was the “Associate Handbook ‘ she received from the Hospital , which contained the personnel polices of the Hospital that governed her employment . Baril was terminated for making a call through the Hospital ‘s toll-free number , as a result of which he was deemed to have committed a violation of the Hospital ‘s rules and policies , which merited her immediate termination . Baril argues that the Hospital itself breached the employment contract by unjustly terminating her employment . The Court of Appeals of South Carolina began its discussion by stating that the general rule on employment contracts is that contracts of employment are “at-will ‘ contracts . This means that the contract is terminable at the pleasure of either party , at any time , regardless of the existence or non-existence of a justifiable ground for the termination . However , the existence of an employee handbook is recognized as an exemption to the general rule . Such a handbook may create an employment contract , depending on the terms stated therein . Where the handbook contains ambiguous clauses such as disclaimers , the issue of whether it could constitute an employment contract has to be determined by a jury ,and not by summary judgment . The court noted that while the handbook explicitly states that it does not change the nature of the employment contract as an at-will contract ,it does provide strict procedures to be followed in disciplinary cases such as the one where Baril is concerned . Thus , the Hospital ‘s procedures and practices give rise to more than one reasonable inference concerning the creation of an employment contract . Concomitantly , we find the trial court erred in granting summary judgment on the issue of whether Hospital ‘s policies found in its employee handbook , amendments , and actual practices created an employment contract between Baril and Hospital . The court also determined that the employment contract established by the Hospital ‘s practices and procedures requires that there be an existing just cause for termination . The criterion for determining justness in the termination of Baril ‘s employment rests on the existence of a “reasonable good faith belief that sufficient cause existed for termination ‘ Weighing the arguments of both Baril and the Hospital , the court concluded that reasonable minds could differ as to the whether there was good or bad faith in the Hospital ‘s termination of Baril ‘s employment .Therefore , the case could not have been settled using the rules on summary judgment .Attached :Case : HYPERLINK “http /www .sccourts .org /opinions /HTMLfiles /COA /3561 .htm “http /www .sccourts .org /opinions /HTMLfiles /COA /3561 .htm THE STATE OF SOUTH CAROLINA In The Court of Appeals Marolyn L . Baril , Appellant ,v .Aiken…

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