How Separation Agreements Can Benefit Both Employers and Employees

Separation agreements, especially in the case of an unexpected termination, can seem fairly one-sided. Many employees and employers alike, however, are not aware of the benefits that both sides can garner from negotiating their side of the agreement. Just as with any other contract, your separation agreement is negotiable, depending on the willingness of both parties.

For Employees

Employees should not feel pressured to sign the separation agreement instantly. It’s always recommended to read over contracts before signing, especially so with a separation agreement. Many employees will find that there’s more room for negotiation than expected. One of the primary concerns of a newly terminated employee is where they’ll land next, and negotiating the details of non-disparagement and the language used in the case of a referral could be very beneficial to the upcoming job search. Employees may also be able to negotiate the amount of compensation received, which could be critical to maintaining financial stability. If the employer provided it, employees may negotiate an extension of their insurance plan but may have to cover their employer’s side of the premiums as well.

For Employers

Employers should be careful to clear the air about their relationship with the employee from this point onward. If the employee was involved in a sensitive area of your business and had access to proprietary information, an NDA (if not already used) should be heavily considered to protect trade secrets, if necessary. Businesses often make use of a non-disparagement agreement as well, as a disgruntled employee could potentially do a lot of damage to your future hiring prospects, or even the public perception of your company as a whole.

These Rules May Change Soon

Recently, lawmakers in New York have discussed a ban on non-disparagement and non-disclosure agreements in not only separation agreements, but employee contracts as a whole. NDAs and other similar agreements have previously been used to prevent employees from speaking out, even proactively. Citing concerns over the silencing of employees who have faced harassment in the workplace, their goal is to remove these agreements from employee contracts and ensure that every employee is able to freely bring forward claims of any illegal activity they experienced in the workplace. 

We’re able to help businesses and employees alike resolve their separation agreement issues. If you’re in need of a skilled New York employment litigator, contact Canales PLLC today to schedule your consultation.

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Canales PLLC

As a minority-owned law firm with experience across a broad range of industries and subject matters, Canales PLLC understands the importance of creating diverse, client-centered solutions that cater to each client’s particular needs.

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