I accepted a job in another city, but after a few months, I have realized that it is not right for me. I also strongly do not believe that it can be fixed for a myriad of reasons. I then found another job that I very much wanted, and landed it.

I need a steady (as much as possible) stream of income, so I am hesitant to give the full two weeks notice. Since I've only been there a few months, I'm thinking there's a high probability they will let me go either on the spot or less than the 2 weeks.

I'm very sure I'll never want to work there again, and I get that I'm already burning a bridge by quitting so early (but it's just honestly what's bet for me).

Should I give the full two weeks, 1 week, or something else?

And are my assumptions more or less correct about being let go early?

Note: I am in the US and not on a contract. It is an 'at-will' employer meaning I can be terminated (or conversely leave) without notice or cause.

  • 2
    What does your original contract say about giving notice?
    – Brandin
    Oct 22, 2015 at 19:43
  • 1
    This is a double standard that has always bugged me. Employees are always expected to give 2 weeks notice, but I have never heard of an employer giving an employee 2 weeks notice at termination. Its just "your fired. Now we will escort you out." Its nice if you can give the notice, but if you cant gamble on the loss of 2 weeks pay, then quit. Since you dont care about rehire, and you dont need unemployment benefits, your only negative consequence is that future employers who call and as "was 2 weeks notice given?" will get an answer of "no", which I have never heard to be a dealbreaker. Oct 22, 2015 at 19:59
  • 1
    This is location dependent, where are you working?
    – cdkMoose
    Oct 22, 2015 at 20:32
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    @user2989297 - being fired and being made redundant are different things. In AU and UK, you can only be fired with cause. Anything else requires the employer to pay out the notice period.
    – HorusKol
    Oct 22, 2015 at 21:52
  • 1
    @Joe and HorusKol Obviously I'm from America since I had the gall to answer without accommodating for all global laws or announcing my country of residence as part of my answer. Oct 22, 2015 at 22:18

4 Answers 4


And are my assumptions more or less correct about being let go early?

No one can know this. You will find out when you give notice (reread your contract, too).

However, planning for the worst is probably good so...

Should I give the full two weeks, 1 week, or something else?

Why don't you talk with your new company and tell them, "I would like to give 2 weeks notice at my current company out of respect, but am concerned they will just let me go immediately. If this happens I would be available to start on X instead of Y - is this an option?"


Just give your two weeks. If the company decides to walk you out AND not pay out the two weeks then call the new employer and ask about starting immediately. This type of situation is common enough that the new employer would understand.


Since your profile shows Florida, I am assuming this is in the US.

Your contract certainly should be checked first and trumps anything we may tell you.

Not withstanding state specifics, they can terminate you on the spot. However, that changes the dynamic of the situation. When you give two weeks notice, you are in control of your termination date and bear the burden for the same. However, if they fire you on the spot, they have taken control of the termination date and now bear the burden. In most situations, this would obligate them for unemployment, since technically you have now been fired and many companies don't want to deal with that. If they don't want you around, they may just say don't come back in and we'll pay you for the two weeks.

You should also check state law in Florida or whatever state you work in to see exactly how this scenario is interpreted.


Generally, you should give the full two-weeks notice. Quitting with less notice tends to leave behind a mostly unfavorable perception.

Since you've only been there a few months, your (soon to be former) company may well ask you to leave on the spot or after just a few days. If that happens, you can always call up your new employer and explain (in a positive manner) that you are available to start earlier than originally planned.

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