philadelphia law firm reviewing and negotiating Employment Agreements in pennsylvania and new jersey

At some point in their careers, most employees are asked to sign some type of employment agreement (contract) with an employer. There are different types of agreements, including general employment agreements, non-competition agreements, and severance agreements. To understand all rights and obligations under these agreements prior to signing, it is important to have an employment attorney review each of these documents.

Not all employers use employment agreements. When used, an employment agreement typically outlines the basic terms of an employee’s employment relationship with his/her employer, including the job requirements, compensation and benefits, confidentiality requirements, invention assignments, and whether employment is “at will” or for a certain time period. Even if an employee did not sign a document called “employment agreement,” other documents, including offer letters and e-mails, may form the basis of an employment agreement.

A non-competition agreement, also referred to as a non-compete or a covenant not to compete, is an agreement between an employer and employee, which prohibits the employee from entering into employment that competes with the employer during or after the employment relationship at hand. Most non-competition agreements also include provisions banning employees from soliciting other employees and customers following termination of the employment relationship. Non-competition agreements are often included in employment agreements, but are often a stand-alone document.

Since non-competition agreements control behavior not only during employment, but also after the employment relationship ends, it is extremely important to thoroughly review the agreement prior to signing. An employment attorney can help an employee understand the agreement’s legal requirements before signing. An employment attorney can also help negotiate different terms that might align more closely with the employee’s personal goals.

A severance agreement is an agreement between an employer and a departing employee that compensates the departing employee for termination of the employment relationship. Unless the employer previously agreed to provide severance pay to a departing employee through an employment agreement, plan, or policy, an employer is not required to provide severance pay. Many employers, however, offer severance to departing employees, especially long-term employees, in exchange for the employee entering into a severance agreement. Because most severance agreements include a release and waiver of all potential legal claims the employee may have against an employer, it is important to consult with an attorney prior to signing a severance agreement.

I received an employment agreement, non-competition agreement, or severance agreement. What do I do?

If you received any type of employment agreement from an employer or if you believe that your employer has breached an agreement, contact employment lawyer Stephanie J. Mensing of Mensing Law LLC at (215) 586-3751. Ms. Mensing in an employment attorney with extensive experience reviewing and negotiating employment agreements in Pennsylvania and New Jersey employment matters. Schedule a consultation today to ensure that your rights are protected.