Public Policy Exception Law and Legal Definition

Public policy exception is a rule of exception to the employment-at-will rule. Under this exception, an employer can not fire or discharge an employee if it would violate the doctrine of public policy of a state or a state statute or federal statute.

An employer cannot react against an employee for performing an action in accordance with public policy. An employee is protected from losing his/her job if s/he disobeys an employer by not doing an illegal or immoral act. Thus public policy is recognized as an exception to the at-will rule.