Pink Slip


The term pink slip refers to the formal notice provided to an employee when their employment with a company is terminated.  Pink slip is also a metonymy, the actual notice the employee receives is not printed on pink paper.


When an employee is laid off, or their employment is terminated, the notice they receive is oftentimes referred to as a pink slip.  However, the actual written notice will likely be printed on a white sheet of paper.   The exact source of the term is unknown, but it's believed to have originated when carbonless copy paper was commonly used as business stationary.  Before the age of electronic documents, carbonless paper allowed the user to make copies of invoices and receipts.  The original document would appear on white paper, while yellow and pink paper was reserved for copies.

Pink Slip Party

One of the ways job seekers can network with each other is through a pink slip party.  These events provide participants with the opportunity to share job search advice.  The popularity of these parties increases during economic downturns, when the unemployment rate is on the rise.

Related Terms

termination benefits, one-time termination benefit, special termination benefit, constructive discharge, employment contract, implied employment contract, Loudermill Rights, partial unemployment benefits, resignation