There are parts of the agreement that I don`t understand or can`t respect – does it matter? A specialist lawyer advises you on the merits of your claim and on the amount of money you would probably have received from an employment court. There are very few exceptions: some types of claims cannot be dropped, even with a settlement agreement. The most common example is that of bodily injury in which you are not aware of the breach at the time of signing the contract. For example, an occupational illness action in which you were untnowingly exposed to asbestos at work would not prevent you from taking legal action against your employer if, years later, you discovered that you had developed asbestosis because of that exposure. If a lawyer advises you on a settlement agreement, but you decide not to accept the proposed terms, you may still have to pay all of your lawyer`s fees. The obligation for your employer to contribute to your lawyers` fees is only valid if you sign the settlement agreement. Your lawyer will explain the consequences. It is important to note that settlement agreements are a process of discussion and negotiation in which both parties are not required to accept the terms originally proposed. It is always recommended that you seek advice from a qualified labour law professional to ensure that you are getting the best result for you. If your employer has offered you a settlement agreement, you may also be offered an «ex gratia termination payment».
These types of payments are usually granted as an incentive to resolve potential claims from the Labor Court/District Court. Generally speaking, employers can pay the first £30,000 in compensation for the transaction agreement tax-free, but the correct legal concept is «transaction agreement». Make sure you have all relevant documents and data on hand when you get advice. This can be your employment contract, the date of the dispute and copies of all emails on the settlement. Most settlement agreements are intended to cover all types of claims you might have against your employer. This means that you waive your rights to assert legal and contractual rights for personal injury. If you are satisfied with the terms of the contract, great – sign it, send it back. If this is not the case, you are not obliged to accept the offer. Transaction agreements are completely voluntary. With the help of a lawyer, you can enter a negotiation process and ask for both a larger amount of compensation and extras, such as a work note or a letter of apology. The employer should expect to make a contribution to the worker`s legal fees.
The employee must be provided with legal advice on the agreement to ensure that they understand the full terms of the agreement. Most of the time, it will be a qualified lawyer, but it could also be a union representative or an advisor authorized to advise on settlement agreements. A settlement agreement (formerly known as a compromise agreement) is a legally binding agreement between you and your employer.