Protecting Your Rights Regarding Employment Contracts
The majority of employers in New York hire employees on an at-will basis, which means either party can terminate the employment relationship at any time for any lawful reason. However, some companies require certain employees to sign contracts that provide specific terms of the employment relationship, including the rights and responsibilities of both the employer and the employee.
Both parties are legally required to adhere to the terms of an employment contract. No employee should sign any contract without first reviewing it with a skilled employment attorney who can ensure you do not agree to any unfavorable terms. In addition, if you believe that your employer violated the terms of the agreement, an attorney can help protect your rights and take legal action if needed.
Whether you were offered a contract or would like to discuss a possible violation by your employer, an experienced employment lawyer at Braverman Law PC can assist you. Please contact our office today for more information about how we can help.
Negotiating the Terms of Your Employment Contract
Like any type of contract, an employment agreement can address any number of issues and set specific terms and conditions. While contracts can vary widely from industry to industry and even from one position to another, they can often address the:
- Type and amount of compensation, including salary, commissions, and bonuses
- Benefits, including health coverage, paid time off, stock options, retirement funds, and more
- Job responsibilities and performance standards for the employee and how the employer will measure performance
- Grounds for termination of the employment contract
- Nondisclosure agreements regarding the company’s confidential information
- Noncompete agreements that limit the employee’s future employment after termination of the employment relationship
- Length of the term of employment and any options for renewal
- Severance agreements
An employment contract is legally binding. Once you sign it, you must comply with the terms or face possible legal liabilities. For example, if you agree to a two-year term of employment and then find a better job after six months, you can face serious penalties if you leave the first position before the set duration of employment is over.
Many employment agreement terms can cause you harm in the future. For example, if you sign a contract with a noncompete clause, you may significantly limit your employment opportunities after your contract expires. Many times, these clauses are overly broad, and you should narrow them down substantially before agreeing to them.
Too many people do not know how to identify unfavorable contract terms—or in their excitement to have a job, they’re willing to agree to anything. This can cause you serious harm down the road, however. If your job requires a contract, always take the time to review the agreement with an experienced employment contracts attorney before you sign it.
At Braverman Law PC, we can identify unfair or unfavorable terms and can help you negotiate for better ones. We will advise you about the contract’s legal implications so you can make the right decision. Please contact us today if you need assistance reviewing an employment contract.
Employment Contract Violations
When an employer violates an employment contract, an employee can suffer serious financial harm. A breach of contract can occur by:
- Failing to fully compensate the employee as agreed
- Trying to alter the terms of the agreement
- Terminating the employee for reasons the agreement does not allow
In any of the above cases, employees can lose out on significant compensation that they deserved under their contracts. If an employer fails to pay you as agreed (including commissions or bonuses), you have the right to take legal action to seek the compensation you earned.
Wrongful termination is a common breach of an employment contract worth further exploration. Employment contracts may only allow termination for cause, which means the employee failed to perform adequately or engaged in misconduct or in a violation of employment policies. However, many employers will cite pretextual reasons for terminating an employee when the actual reasons—discrimination or retaliation, for example—violate the contract. In such cases, wrongfully terminated employees can fight for reinstatement and full compensation for all lost income.
Should You Call an Employment Contracts Law Firm?
An employment contracts lawyer can assist you in many different ways. If you are wondering whether to call today, ask yourself the following questions:
- Were you asked to sign an employment agreement and are unsure about the meaning of any terms or the possible implications?
- Were you asked to sign an agreement and disagree with some of the terms, yet do not know how to negotiate more favorable ones?
- Did you sign an employment agreement and now believe that your employer has violated one or more of its conditions?
- Did your employer terminate you for a reason the contract might not allow?
If you answered “yes” to any of the above questions or if you have any additional concerns about an employment contract not listed here, do not delay in calling Braverman Law PC. We believe in fully protecting the rights of employees and we strive for the best results possible for every client.
Learn More From a New York Employment Attorney Today
Braverman Law PC regularly reviews and negotiates the terms of employment contracts. We also represent employees whose employers violated their rights through breaches of contract. If you have questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to call a New York employment contracts lawyer at (212) 206-8166 or contact us online to learn more about our legal services.