Severance and Separation Agreements

Employment can end suddenly. A company may conduct a reduction in force and offer employees a severance or separation agreement. Even with a single employee termination, an employer is sometimes willing to provide some financial benefit, but that usually requires a release of all legal claims.

Before signing a severance or separation agreement, an employee should review it carefully to understand the scope the obligations it imposes. The employee must know what benefit the agreement confers, and what obligations it imposes.

A company often wants to have a release of claims from the employee in exchange for the severance benefit. Often, the company will ask for other things, such as agreements by the employee not to disparage the company or not to reapply for employment.

If the employee is over age 40, the law requires that the employer include certain language for there to be an enforceable release of a potential age discrimination claim.

If you are presented with a severance agreement or separation agreement, contact the attorneys at Johnston Tobey Baruch for an evaluation of your claims by clicking the Tell Us About Your Case button and selecting the Employment Law option.

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