Employment ContractsEvery Employee Deserves Respect
Employment Contract Attorneys in Maryland
Taking a Thoughtful Approach to Achieve Your Goals
Employment contracts are legally binding documents that define the terms, conditions, and privileges of your employment. Before signing a legally binding employment contract, it is always important to seek legal advice. At the Law Office of Andrew M. Dansicker, LLC, our Maryland employment contract lawyers can help evaluate your employment contract, determine its legal implications, and take advantage of any potential leverage you may have to negotiate a more favorable contract that contains terms that are less restrictive to you.
Discuss your situation with our Maryland employment contract attorneys during a consultation by calling (410) 213-3392.
Ensuring Fair & Comprehensive Employment Contracts
Seemingly simple or unimportant provisions can have a profound effect on your term of employment and thereafter should you leave. For example, many employment contracts have draconian clauses that restrict your ability to work or compete with your employer in the future. Other employment contracts do not adequately set forth the reasons for which your employer can terminate your employment.
Our Maryland employment contract attorneys have evaluated dozens of employment contracts for numerous clients – including both employees and employers – so we can provide you with strategic and intelligent guidance concerning the existence or absence of particular terms and conditions that will help you protect your rights and negotiate a fair and reasonable employment contract. This advice and counseling may be necessary at the beginning of your job, when we can analyze and negotiate your employment contracts and noncompetition agreement. It can also help at the end of your employment, when we can advise you about a severance agreement or about the impact of any non-compete agreement you may have signed.
What is an Employment Contract?
When an employer and an employee enter a legally binding agreement about the terms of employment, this agreement is known as an “employment contract.” This contract is generally written and signed by each party, but it can also be oral or implied from the parties’ actions and statements.
An employment contract may also explain:
- How many hours an employee must work
- The benefits entitled to an employee
- The employee’s medical insurance coverage
- The employee’s paid time off, sick leave, and life insurance coverage
The employer and employee both determine the terms of an employment contract. Although the employer often has more bargaining power, employees also have legally protected rights.
Many employment agreements contain the following clauses:
- Termination clause – Presents the grounds for termination, as well as determines if an employee can re-apply for their current position or another role.
- Non-disclosure clause – Orders an employee to avoid disclosing the employer’s customer lists, intellectual property, and/or trade secrets to anyone who isn’t allowed to obtain such information.
- Non-compete clause – Forbids an employee to work with a competitor after he/she is terminated.
- Dispute resolution clause – Requires an employment to go through arbitration or mediation, rather than litigation, in the event of an employment dispute.
An employee can enter into an employment contract before or after he/she begins working for the employer. At any point, the terms of the contract can be re-negotiated.
What is a Breach of Contract?
When an employer or an employee fails to fulfill their agreed-upon obligations, such action is considered a “breach of contract.” For example, an employee claims to have been laid off or terminated prior to the term agreed to in the contract, or for reasons that were forbidden according to the agreement.
Common examples of a breach of employment agreement include:
- Failing to pay an employee’s wages as stated in the contract
- Denying an employee’s entitled benefits
- Seeking employment elsewhere before the end of the contract
- Disclosing private information to another company
However, if an employer and employee enter an “at-will employment agreement,” then the employee can be fired at any time for any legal reason. Furthermore, employers also have the power to change the terms of employment at any time.
How Do You Legally Resolve a Breach of Contract?
The legal remedies available for breach of employment agreement depend on the type of breach and the type of contract that was breached. For instance, if a breach involves failure to pay wages, then the employer may compensate the employee for what they are owed as a legal remedy.
In general, most contract damages are limited to “expectation damages,” which are the amount the employee should have earned if the agreement was fulfilled. However, an employee is obligated to “mitigate” damages caused by a breach of contract, meaning that he/she must take reasonable steps to minimize the financial loss (e.g., finding another job or being reinstated to their former position).
The following are other types of legal remedies:
- Reimbursement for paid time off (PTO) and/or sick pay that was never given by the employer
- Reimbursement for work-related expenses and/or travel expenses that were owed to the employee
- The employer is required to update the employment policies
Call an Employment Contract Lawyer in Maryland
Attorney Andrew Dansicker and our team have extensive experience analyzing employment contracts and non-compete agreements. We have litigated these types of cases at the state, federal, and administrative levels. Our employment contract attorneys in Maryland are eager to help protect your rights and best interests.
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