Employment contracts and consulting agreements are agreements that are designed to assist both employees and employers in maintaining specific rights in relation to employment. Some contracts are written while others are implied. Written contracts are the best way for both parties to ensure their rights are upheld. Implied contracts are not legal contracts but instead provide employee policies through other channels such as an employee handbook or through internal memos or emails. Some verbal agreements may also be considered legally binding.
Employment contracts may provide the terms and conditions of employment:
- Vacation benefits
- Health benefits
- Employee grievance procedures
- Employee agreements after termination
One of the most common types of employment agreements is the non-compete agreement. This is a legal document that provides that the former employee is restricted from certain behavior after employment is terminated. A non-compete agreement may provide that the employee may not take or use any or confidential company information. It often provides that the employee may not contact current customers for a specific period of time or may not perform similar work in the same geographic area for a certain time period.
Employment contracts may be the same for each employee or may be drafted specifically for each employee separately. Some employees may be covered by a contract while others may not be. Consultants may also be asked to sign legal agreements before performing services for the company. One of the most common agreements is the non-disclosure agreement (NDA) that is designed to protect a company’s confidential information.
An experienced employment attorney will work to draft an employee contract or consultant agreement that provides the legal protection you need. If the terms of an employment agreement have been violated, an attorney will seek legal action on your behalf.