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Severance and non-compete agreements: what to know

Many people soon find that their employment agreement is much more complicated than they thought.

For example, if an employment relationship comes to an end, your company may offer you a severance agreement. If you receive any type of offer, it's important that you understand what it entails.

For example, an employer may ask you to sign away a variety of rights by accepting a severance package. One of these may be the right to file a lawsuit against the employer, which could be important to you if you believe you were unlawfully terminated.

A noncompete agreement can be every bit as complex as a severance agreement. With this, you give up your right to provide services to a competing company in a particular industry or geographic area.

Here's something you need to remember: The law limits what can be included in a noncompete agreement. For example, an agreement stating that you are never allowed to work in the same industry after leaving your employer may be considered overly harsh.

At our law firm, we have years of experience with many types of severance and non-compete agreements. While there is nothing wrong with employers and employees using these agreements to protect themselves, you need to understand your legal rights and if you are being taken advantage of.

It can be a challenge to understand the finer details of either agreement, but you need to stake a step back and understand what's in front of you. If you don't, you could end up signing something that works against you after your employment comes to an end.

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