If you have been asked to sign an employment contract, you likely have a few questions about what you are agreeing to. The agreements are in place so there is an understanding of the conditions and terms of employment between the employer and employee. The document may help if there is ever a dispute.
Reviewing and Negotiating a Contract
Before signing an Ohio employment contract, have a Columbus employment lawyer review the terms and share any concerns. It is likely that an employer sought its own legal counsel to review the contract and fully understood the impact of the contract’s provisions, so you should ensure that you are on equal footing by reviewing the contract with your own legal counsel. When you have a good understanding of what the employer has put forward, it will be easier to accept the terms or create a counteroffer, when appropriate.
Review is essential because a signed contract binds both the employer and employees with specific legal duties. Going into an agreement all duties need to be clearly defined.
Basics that could be in an employment agreement:
- The date the position starts.
- Duties and tasks that are the responsibility of the jobholder.
- The amount that will be paid to the employee.
- How and when the hourly wage or salary will be distributed.
- A list of employee benefits.
- Potential non-compete information.
- How the agreement could be terminated in the future.
One of the things that also should be considered is if the pay is in line with what is appropriate, that there is equal pay for equal work.
Contracts and Legal Concerns
Employment agreements are generally legally binding, but sometimes that can be difficult to prove. There are also times when contracts are connected to union labor agreements. In those instances, members of the union are covered by group contracts. These group employment agreements spell out the employee benefits, wages, work schedule expectations, and concerns directly related to the industry. If there is an issue for a union employee, the union contract likely has a way to address the issue within the group contract.
There are benefits to written employment contracts. When expectations, benefits, and responsibilities are clearly outlined, it helps everyone understand an employee’s role within a business. That said, you do not want to sign a legally binding agreement without understanding the details. Seeking the advice of a Columbus employment lawyer is a way to be sure you are comfortable with all aspects of the contract.
After you do sign, do what you can to uphold your end of the contract to avoid disputes and claims that you have breached (violated) the terms of the contract. An example of this is if there is a timeframe the position is to be held. Some contracts will state an employee stay on the job for a certain amount of time before leaving the organization. Often these stipulations are in place so the company can reduce the expenses involved with hiring and training.
Have you been asked to sign an employment agreement? The lawyers at Coffman Legal LLC are strong and committed advocates for all Ohio workers, from hourly workers to salary executives. Call 614-949-1181 today for a free and confidential consultation.