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Employment At-Will: Massachusetts

Employment At-Will requirements for other states

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

Author: Peter J. Mee, Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP


  • The general rule in Massachusetts is that an employment at-will relationship can be terminated at any time, for any reason, or for no reason at all. See The At-Will Relationship.
  • Massachusetts recognizes limited exceptions to the at-will presumption, including contracts, the implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing, and public policy exceptions. See Employment At-Will Exceptions.
  • Massachusetts courts also recognize certain employment-related torts, including intentional infliction of emotional distress and defamation, so long as the employee is able to satisfy an evidentiary burden. See Tort Considerations.