I work as a casual (non permanent) employee of an organisation, and the manager has asked me to write a letter of intent to send to a third party to outline intent to do something that has about a 50% chance of being pulled off. He doesn't even want to look at the letter, he just wants me to write it and send it.

So I looked up what a letter of intent is, It appears to me that letters of intent have legal ramifications (i.e. google shows examples of cases where one company sues another company to recover costs that were incurred as a result of acting on the letter of intent).

Who is legally accountable should their be a legal problem that occurs as a result of the content of the letter that my boss doesn’t want to look at? (I don’t want this to blow up in my face, am I being paranoid and worried too much?)

  • Hi. Questions are considered off-topic here when they request specific advice for a poster's problem. I think you'd avoid any downvotes & (more importantly) votes to close the question if you rephrased it more generically. I know this sounds contradictory, but more details are also needed. There is substantial caselaw around the notion of the employer-employee relationship & how (or whether) it is applicable in a disputed situation. Also, legal concepts of respondeat superior & vicarious liability are about exactly this. Casual is ambiguous and non-perm employees can still be employees! – A.fm. Oct 28 '19 at 2:32

You are an agent of your employer

As such, what you do legally binds your employer, not you.

An employee can be responsible for torts they commit along with the vicarious liability they create for their employer (not that there is much chance of committing a tort by writing a letter of intent). However, some jurisdictions no longer allow employees to be sued in their own right, some employment contracts give employees indemnity and almost all insurance policies will respond to protect employees.

You are, of course, responsible for any crimes you commit.

If you screw it up, your employer can sanction you just as they can when you screw up anything else in your job. However, if you are just doing as you were told, it’s hard to see how such a sanction could be legitimate. If this concerns you, try posting on Workplace SE.

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  • @A.fm let us continue this discussion in chat. – Dale M Oct 28 '19 at 3:12

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