Your Contract: The Devil Is In The Details

An employment contract is one of the most important documents you will sign. It defines your rights and responsibilities, and may make a huge difference to your future.

If you have a new job, you may be feeling very positive about it right now, but it's important to take the time to fully understand exactly what you're getting into. Your contract will be in force not just during the first exciting days at your new job, but during times of trouble as well, and at the end, whether you end your term, are fired or choose to resign.

At Vey Willetts LLP, we can help you understand the details of your contract, as well as your options when it comes to making sure your contract works for you, not against you.

It's Set In Writing; It May Not Be Set In Stone

Some contracts must be taken "as is," and any change will invalidate the whole thing. If yours isn't, then after review you may want to negotiate for improvements. We can help you do that.

If you are under pressure to sign without careful review of your contract, that's reason for caution.

Our lawyers will examine:

  • Severance clausesYour employer may have a clause stating what you will be entitled to if you are fired (often followed with "in accordance with the Employment Standards Act."), which may be considerably less than what you would get at common law.
  • Timing of beginning employment: Many of our clients have begun jobs under a verbal contract for some time before getting a written contract. We will discuss whether your job is merely a continuation of what you had before, or something new, and why it matters.
  • Employee/contractorWith some exceptions, contractors fare worse than employees when it comes to legal protections.
  • Probationary period: This is generally a "test period" in which you may be restricted from certain benefits and can be let go with little severance.
  • Restrictive covenants (non-solicitation and non-competition clauses):These are designed to protect your employer from employees who leave and take business or clients away with them. They can have harsh consequences for you if, for example, they say that you cannot work in the same industry in the same city for a year after you leave your job.
  • Details on income: This includes raises, bonuses, commissions and profit-sharing. You need to know what you are entitled to, when you are entitled it and other details.

Employment and Labour Laws are not always straightforward, but whether you are an employee or an employer, understanding your rights and duties will only stand to benefit you. Reach out to an employment lawyer or labour lawyer today if you have any questions and be sure to get what you deserve and safeguard yourself for the future. The lawyers at Vey Willetts LLP have a proven track record and are happy to assist.  

Our employment lawyers and labour lawyers serve clients throughout Ontario. 

Call us today at 1-800-296-7989 or fill out our online form.