CategoriesSend Us An Email
Top Reasons to Review Your Employment Contract With a Lawyer
One of the best things that can ever happen to someone is to receive a job offer, particularly one’s dream job. When someone receives a job offer, they can get lost in all the excitement and sign the employment contract without carefully going through it.
And since employment contracts are usually legally binding, signing them without proper review can lead to severe legal implications either now or in the future.
So, in this article, we will look at some of the reasons why seeking legal expertise before signing an employment contract can provide you with much-needed peace of mind and protect your professional journey.
The term contract is a legally enforceable agreement between two or more parties that outlines specific obligations and rights. Many scenarios can mandate two or more parties to enter a contractual agreement. For example, if two or more entities are involved in a commercial transaction, they could draft a contract outlining their specific roles and rights. Also, in the labor world, an employee will likely enter into a contractual agreement with their new employer before starting a new role in a business organization. This type of contract is called an employment contract.
Simply put, an employment contract can be seen as a legal agreement between a business owner and an employee. The contract typically outlines the terms and conditions of their working relationship and also gives a detailed breakdown of their job responsibilities, termination procedures, job benefits, working hours, and any other relevant terms.
As always, an employment contract is legally binding in that both the employer and the employee must follow the terms and conditions outlined in the contract. If, for whatever reason, either party fails to adhere to the terms, it could lead to legal consequences.
As an employee who has just received a new job offer or a change of role in an organization, it is crucial that you go through the employment contract before you put pen to paper. This is because signing a contract with unfavorable conditions could impact your rights either during your employment or during the termination process.
Employment contracts cover various terms and conditions that define the working relationship between an employer and an employee. In this blog section, we will briefly look at some of the key elements.
- Parties Involved: This is one of the key elements in a typical employment contract. This part of the contract shows the names of the employer and employee.
- Job Title and Description: This is yet another important section of the contract. This part carefully describes the role and responsibilities of the employee.
- Start Date and Duration: This specifies when the employment begins and whether it’s a permanent, temporary, or fixed-term contract.
- Work Hours: Since companies tend to schedule their working hours differently, an employment contract will also outline the expected work hours, days of the week, and any flexible arrangements.
- Compensation and Benefits: A typical employment contract outlines an employee’s salary, wage, or payment structure. It will also outline the various employee benefits.
- Termination Clause: An employment contract also showcases the conditions under which either party can terminate the contract, including notice periods.
Other key elements of a typical employment contract include a confidentiality clause, dispute resolution, health and safety plans, an employee code of conduct they must adhere to, severance packages, and a contract amendment clause.
As an employee, before signing an employment contract, you must contact a professional employment attorney to help you review it. In this blog section, we will answer why that is important.
The simple truth is that employment law is very complex and varies across different jurisdictions; hence, expert help will be greatly needed. When you contact a lawyer specializing in employment law, such a lawyer will work closely with you to ensure that the employment contract you are about to sign aligns with relevant laws and regulations, thereby protecting your rights and interests.
Another reason for hiring an employment lawyer to come and review your employment contract before you sign is that they will help you understand the legal languages or terminologies used in the contract, ensuring that you comprehend all the terms and their implications before signing.
Aside from helping you understand the terms and conditions of the contract, an employment attorney can also help you negotiate better or more favorable terms. You must realize that employment contracts are usually drafted to favor the company and not the employee. And so hiring a lawyer with knowledge of employment contracts will help negotiate better and more favorable terms.
As we said earlier, employment contracts are usually complex, so there are some clauses in the contract that a person with little or no knowledge about employment contracts will not detect. The problem is that when such a person signs the contract, the clauses could affect their rights in many ways.
Therefore, by reviewing the contract with an employment lawyer, they can easily identify any clauses that may be unfair or overly restrictive, ensuring your rights are upheld, and you’re not agreeing to terms that might be detrimental to your career or personal life.
As an employee, before you sign an employment contract, particularly one that contains confidentiality or non-compete clauses, it is paramount that you contact an attorney to review the contract for you. Employment lawyers are knowledgeable enough to explain those clauses' implications and potential impact on your future career options.
The sad truth is that things won’t always be rosy in the labor world. That is, an employee can experience one or two legal issues. When an employee encounters issues during employment, having a lawyer review their contract beforehand can provide a stronger foundation for any legal actions they might need to take.
This often gets overlooked, but one of the main reasons why it is always ideal to get an employment contract reviewed by an attorney is for proper customization. A lawyer can help customize a contract so that it is tailored to an employee’s specific needs and concerns.
As an employee, having your employment contract reviewed by a legal expert before putting pen to paper can provide you with much-needed peace of mind, allowing you to start your new job with confidence.
If you are an employee in British Columbia and you are looking for an expert employment attorney to review your employment contract, then don’t hesitate to contact us at Stevens and Company Law Corporation today!