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Ann Curry leaves 'Today' show, but what about her employment contract?

Detroit readers who liked watching Ann Curry co-host "Today" on NBC are going to have to make an adjustment; on Thursday, Curry announced that it was her last show.

The move was not unexpected. For weeks, celebrity websites and supermarket checkout aisle tabloids had been gossiping, saying that Curry had no chemistry with co-host Matt Lauer and that NBC wanted to show Curry the door in hopes of boosting ratings (ABC's "Good Morning America" recently beat "Today" in the ratings for the first time in recent memory). It now seems that Curry will be replaced by Savannah Guthrie, who has been a "Today" show contributor for a number of years.

The problem here? Curry had an employment contract that was supposed to give her $30 million for three years as co-host. She has now left her position after one year. Although NBC has said little publicly about her leaving, gossip magazines have said that Curry was demanding the full balance of her contract (so, $20 million).

As we said, NBC has been pretty tight-lipped about this whole "Today" show affair, so we do not know if Curry got what she was asking for or if she and NBC negotiated something else. Either way, what we want Detroit readers to understand is that even after an employment contract is signed, it is sometimes necessary to engage the services of a lawyer because an employer is not honoring his or her part of the bargain, or because some point of the contract has become an issue.

In an ideal world, employment contracts would never be the subject of a dispute, but that just isn't the case.

Source: The Washington Post, "Ann Curry: Today is my last day co-hosting 'Today,'" Lisa de Moraes, June 28, 2012

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