When navigating the complexities of employment termination, seeking legal help for a severance package is a prudent and often necessary step. A severance package, typically offered to employees upon job termination, includes financial benefits, such as a lump sum or continued salary, health benefits, and sometimes outplacement assistance. While these packages aim to provide a safety net for departing employees, disputes can arise regarding the terms and adequacy of the offered compensation.
Legal assistance becomes crucial in ensuring fair treatment and understanding the legal implications of the severance agreement. Employment laws and regulations vary, and a skilled attorney can assess the specific circumstances of the termination, scrutinize the terms of the package, and advise on whether they align with legal standards. They may also negotiate on behalf of the employee to secure a more favorable arrangement.
Time sensitivity is a key factor when considering legal help for a severance package. Many agreements include deadlines for acceptance, and seeking legal counsel promptly allows individuals to make informed decisions within these constraints. Overall, engaging legal support during the severance negotiation process empowers individuals to protect their rights, secure equitable compensation, and transition more smoothly into the next phase of their professional journey.
If you have been laid off by your employer for no direct of your own, you may have a severance package to deal with. The package includes an agreement with relevant terms and conditions and mentions the severance pay, which is the amount and benefits you would get as you part ways with the employer. Regardless of whether you already have a new job or are looking for options, do not take the severance package for granted. The financial benefits can help you tide through the time before you find a better career opportunity. At this point, you should get legal advice from an experienced attorney who specializes in employment law. Here are some details worth knowing.
Looking at the larger picture
Many states have the at-will employment law, so why would your employer offer a severance package? Do not assume that this is a goodwill gesture, although, at times, companies do want to retain good terms with employees they are letting go. You have reasons to be concerned if you suffered discrimination or filed a complaint and received the severance package a few days later. These are tricky situations, and it is best to work with an attorney who will help evaluate the offer better.
Focus on the right things
Usually, a severance package includes one to two weeks of pay for each year an employee has worked for a company. If losing the job is likely to cause serious financial distress, you can negotiate that aspect. If you were holding an executive position, you have more room for negotiation. You can also talk to HR to find out whether they can extend health coverage and other benefits for at least a few months until you find a job. If you have unused paid leaves, you can also discuss that aspect while talking about the severance package.
Other things to know
Many employers offer job placement assistance for employees that they have to let go. Your lawyer will also advise you on discussing retirement savings, stocks, and pension plans. States have specific laws concerning these aspects, and if you don’t understand all that, let your employment lawyer negotiate for you. If you were entitled to other perks, you might want to discuss those things, too, such as keeping the company laptop or retaining certain memberships.
Remember, you cannot negotiate every aspect, but there is always the scope to get more of what your employer offers. Talk to a lawyer about your severance package now!