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I had accepted the offer of a startup company through email. I did not send any signed copy of the offer letter. But after 20 days I got some negative feed back about the firm, and I declined their offer citing urgent family reasons. Now the owner is pestering me to cough up the CTC amount equivalent to notice period. I did not even join the company, joining date was more than a month away when I declined their offer. Can I be sued in this case. Should I seek legal advice?
From India, Shiliguri
Well Lucky, first i wanna say that there is nothing to worry about if you havent joined the employer and have never signed any paper related to job offer i.e.Employment Letter.
But I would like to know more about reason to refused this Job offer and what negative feedback you are talking about? Have you ever tried to know about the Employer/Company Profile etc before accepting the Offer? if no, you must do that. One must go through the Employer/Company Profile before accepting any Job Offer bcz this is really important and a question of Career, dont you think so? But it seems you havent consider this before.
Finally you dont need to worry about anything..

From India, Gurgaon
Your decision to decline the offer is right. A company which ask for Notice period from the candidate with whom the chord is not fixed, speaks about the quality of the company. Pon
From India, Lucknow
Hi Lukcyroul
You shall read the offer letter carefully, look for a clause which says about the time limit and medium to accept or decline the offer letter.
Have you provided any material which can relate to your accepting the offer letter, like by a mail or signed offer letter scanned and sent back etc. if you havent responded to the offer letter by any means, then need not worry.
Also if you had signed the offer letter, but before the joining date changed you mind (unfortunately !! poor HRs :-(, you can withdraw your acceptance before the joining date by informing the authorized representative (usually HRs if any) in writing.
Always read any document carefully before signing, make sure if its offer letter or employment letter.
lets hear from seniors and readers, please correct me if I m wrong in any points.

From Kuwait, Salmiya
I second the guidance offered by Anil, Pon and Hussain. Please review your status. Joining amount is valid on joining. You are still contemplating at the offer acceptance stage. As stated by Hussain, your offer/Intent letter should include this.
How did you inform the company that you are not accepting there offer? Did you mail them? If not, please draft a mail, including the clause which allows you to consider the offer for a duration and respectfully decline it. Legally, he cannot make any such claim. Unless a candidate is on the rolls of a company, the joining status remains invalid.
Hope this resolves your situation. Incase you had exchanged any document or any other communication, please share , so that we can suggest appropriately.

From India, Mumbai
Thanks a bunch Anil, Pon, Hussain and (Cite Contribution).
I had accepted the offer letter by email, but did not sign any physical paper or other document. I declined their offer through mail as well citing urgent personal reasons.
I agree that I should have researched about the company thoroughly before accepting the offer. Actually I got in touch with a couple of existing employees, who gave me very negative feedback. And after this whole fiasco I guess all that was true.

From Ireland
Hello luckyroul,
While everyone have given you the right direction, I think Pon hit the bull's eye when he said: A company which ask for Notice period.............speaks about the quality of the company.
Frankly, just want to know which great company is this--whose management thinks they can twist the rules of the game the way they like? Goes to show how people's true intentions/colors get revealed in the strangest of circumstances!!!

From India, Hyderabad
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