Have you just received a great job offer? The only thing left is to give your current employer two weeks notice, right? You had a decent experience working for the company and you are happy to move on to a new challenge, learn new skills and meet new people.

So what happened when you handed in your two weeks notice? Wait, what? You were fired? Is that legal? Talk about a slap in the face! How can an employer do this to you?

Is it legal to get fired in New York State after giving your two weeks notice?

iStock via Getty Images
iStock via Getty Images

Let me just preface this with the whole 'I am not a lawyer' disclaimer. I have been both in the situation where I have given notice to leave a job, and in the position to receive two weeks notice from an employee. What is legal and what is not legal? Remember, you don't have to give two weeks notice and an employer doesn't have to take it. Pretty harsh, right? New York is what's called an "at-will employment" state. How does that affect the legality of you being fired? 

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What does it mean that New York is an "at-will" work state?

iStock via Getty Images
iStock via Getty Images

At-will work states essentially mean that in New York, your employment can be terminated at pretty much anytime, baring a written contract or written agreement saying different. So when you gave your notice, thinking that you were being a great employee, your boss (who fired you) probably was thinking that having you around telling your co-workers how awesome your new job will be, wasn't going to be doing great things for productivity. There is also a chance that you weren't as great of an employee that you thought you were and your boss is just super happy to see you go. If you can afford it, take the two weeks off and enjoy it. If you can't, contact the new employer and say that you can move up your availability date if they could use your sooner.

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