Severance Agreement Attorneys In Seattle
What is a severance agreement?
If you find yourself being let go from a job, there is a chance that your former employer might ask you sign a severance agreement at the time of your termination. Employers aren’t required by law to offer severance packages, which are legal agreements that a former employee enters into for an amount of money. Typically, that agreement is that the former employee won’t sue their former employer for wrongful termination.
Employers include details about their severance package in the employee handbook, or they may not. Employees may also change or remove their severance package. Again, there is no requirement that employers offer a severance package. Usually, they offer a severance package to a terminated employee because they believe that it is of greater benefit to them than risking a lawsuit by a former employee. Even unsuccessful or frivolous lawsuits cost a Vancouver employer substantial time and money, so purchasing the cooperation of a terminated employee can be a significant savings for the employer.
Many times, however, severance packages are an attractive option for someone finding themselves without a job. The way money is dispersed to the former employee, and over what period of time, should be clearly outlined in the severance agreement.
What should I do if I’ve been offered a severance package?
If you have been offered a severance package, you should take your time, consider it carefully, and ideally have it reviewed by an Vancouver severance package attorney before signing. Giving up your right to sue your employer is not something that should be done lightly, and your choice may affect your career for years to come. In addition, an attorney can help you determine if you have grounds for a lawsuit against your former employer.
You are usually allowed to have some time to look at your severance agreement before signing it, ranging from days to weeks. If you are 40 years of age or older, you qualify for protections under the Older Workers Benefit Protection Act (OWBPA). Under this law you have a seven-day period (which can’t be waived by an employer) to revoke your signature on the contract after you accept the deal. This is a protection for workers who have legitimate grounds to sue their former employer.
If you’ve been let go and offered a severance package, here are some steps you can take to ensure that you’re getting the best possible deal:
- Take your time. Don’t sign the severance agreement right away.
- Have your agreement reviewed by an attorney. While it may cost you some amount of money, you could be losing a lot of money on a bad severance package.
- Know what your rights are. You are allowed to have time to think about your severance package before signing it.
Don’t sign anything before speaking with an attorney!
If you sign your severance agreement without knowing all the facts, you could be signing away thousands of dollars. Premier Law Group of Seattle can review your severance documents, potentially saving you money as well as the integrity of your career. You don’t deserve to be a victim of your former employer. Premier Law Group’s experienced employment attorneys will help put the power back in your hands. Give us a call at 206-285-1743 to schedule your consultation today.
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