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Today, one of my coworkers was hired on full time from a contract position. This got me a little bit worried about my future at my current company (explanation to follow).

I was hired back in November 2014 as a sub-sub-contractor (I work for a company A, housed in Virginia, they contracted me to a company B in Washington, who contracted me to a company C where I do the actual programming). My initial contract was for 6 months, so in March 2015, I asked my manager (at C) what the status of my contract was. They decided to extend me until October 2015. Before I got this contract in November, I was on-the-bench, unpaid, for company A for 4 months while they were looking for a position for me (it's in my contract with A that while I'm on the bench, I cannot myself look for employment).

The reason this worried me is because I am locked into a contract with Company A until October of 2016. With this in mind, I'd like to avoid the situation where I'm on the bench for 4 months and not able to pay certain bills again. There are about 4 months until my contract is up. Should I wait until it is closer to the contract end date before bringing up the conversation with my manager at company C?

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    I'd say around the 45 day mark, but your situation is rather complicated. I don't understand how company A could force you to sit on the sideline unpaid for months. That seems very wrong.
    – NotMe
    Jun 18, 2015 at 18:29
  • @NotMe it's in part of my contract that states that I can only work for people that A has searched for. If I were to look myself, and get someone that wanted to hire me, I could have the potential company talk to A, but people I've worked with in A who have done this have been declined, even when the new company would have paid nearly double the asking price. I don't quite understand it myself.
    – user29542
    Jun 18, 2015 at 18:36
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    Wow that is does not sound like a fair contract. Company A is not obligated to pay you if you are on the bench but you are not allowed to get a job on your own? This site is not for legal advice but I am just amazed that is legal.
    – paparazzo
    Jun 18, 2015 at 19:55
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    Just because it is in a contract doesn't mean it is enforceable. What does it say in your contract? What are they guaranteeing to you for your promise not to look for another job outside? If you are under contract they should be paying you. If you are not under contract, they have no hold on you. I'd consult a lawyer (or even the unemployment office if you can't afford a paid consult). This doesn't sound like something they can enforce legally. Jun 18, 2015 at 20:41
  • @FrancineDeGroodTaylor If I recall, the contract guarantees that while they're on the bench, they will be looking for a new position for me. I'll have to check though.
    – user29542
    Jun 18, 2015 at 21:21

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