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Our specialist employment lawyers have considerable experience of providing confidential independent legal advice to employees whether you are a manager in a medium sized business, a city worker, or an executive at a FTSE 250 company.
We offer a quick and efficient settlement agreement advice service.
Call us now on 020 7549 7872 for a FREE no obligation initial discussion or email email@example.com to request a call back at a time that is convenient for you
Q&A Settlement Agreements (formerly known as compromise agreements)
What is a settlement agreement?
A settlement agreement is a contract, regulated by statute, between an employer and an employee (or ex-employee) to settle a claims or a potential claims and/or to prevent the employee from instituting or continuing with employment proceedings in an Employment Tribunal (and other jurisdictions, such as the civil courts).
Why have I been asked to sign a settlement agreement?
It is increasingly common for employers to want all employees – regardless of seniority – to enter into a settlement agreement. Your employer will offer a financial sum to you in return for an effective waiver of all claims (these are often listed in a separate annex) against your employer arising out of your employment and its termination.
Settlement agreements are commonly provided to employees where the employer wishes to avoid the publicity and costs of litigation attached to terminating an individual’s employment.
Why do I need independent legal advice?
For a settlement agreement to be valid and legally binding it must meet the following criteria:
- It must be in writing,
- It must relate to a “particular complaint” or “particular proceedings” and
- the employee must have received legal advice from a relevant independent adviser on the terms and effect of the proposed agreement and its effect on the employee’s ability to pursue any rights before an Employment Tribunal,
What does an independent legal advisor do?
As your independent legal adviser, we will advise on the terms and effect of the settlement agreement, and in particular, its effect on your ability to bring a claim in the Employment Tribunal under the relevant legislation.
We can also provide you with the details of an indpendent financial adviser who may be able to assist you.
What can employees do to make the process quicker?
To make the process quicker, it would be helpful if you could put together a bundle of papers including which we will need to see.
- A copy of the settlement agreement.
- A copy of any relevant correspondence (including emails) that you have received from your employer about the settlement agreement
- A copy of your contract of employment
- A copy of any relevant company policies or procedures – these are often included in a staff handbook.
- Details of any benefits/share schemes.
Your employment history
We also need to know details of your employment history including:
- Your start date and the reasons for any breaks in the contract (to calculate statutory period of continuous employment);
- Your date of birth (so as to calculate any statutory entitlements);
- Any disciplinary record and performance appraisals, and if any warnings have been given;
- Details of any grievances, formal or informal, (if applicable).
Clients are often keen to come to an agreement with their employer on the terms of a settlement agreement as quickly as possible. To assist you in the planning stage we set out below a list of the initial administrative steps that all solicitors will need to carry out:
1. We need to carry out a conflict check to ensure that there would not be a conflict of interest in representing you.
2. We will send you a client care letter, and our terms and conditions of business.
3. We will also need to ask to see and take copies of relevant identification documents to verify your identity, such as a copy of your passport or a photo driving licence, and also a recent utility bill sent to your home address.
4. We will then review the draft settlement agreement, and discuss the background to the matter with you, and discuss the claims that you may have and settlement tactics.
Call us now on 020 7549 7872 for a FREE no obligation initial discussion or email Philip Henson – firstname.lastname@example.org