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Posts tagged: Offer Letter

So You’ve Received a Job Offer

By , June 29, 2018 11:01 am

Congratulations!  However, before accepting your job offer, it is important that you carefully read and understand it.  While you may have been offered the job of your dreams, the offer letter for this job is actually an employment contract that may take away your rights.

The language in the job offer letter will have been drafted by a lawyer and can change and manipulate your rights, often to the benefit of the employer rather than you.  It is therefore in your best interest to ensure that the offer you are accepting protects you and your needs.

Some key details to look out for in an employment contract include: whether the employer could change your job duties and pay without any notice to you, what your rights are if you are terminated without cause, or whether there are any non-solicitation clauses that prevent you from certain behaviour after your job with this employer ends.

To read more case about employment offers and how affect employee rights see here, here and here.

At MacLeod Law Firm, we specialize in protecting the interests and rights of our clients. We will take the time required to ensure that you understand the employment contract, and give you guidance on how to best proceed in your specific circumstances.  At this moment, your ability to negotiate the very best conditions of employment is maximized. Take advantage of your situation by meeting with an experienced employment lawyer.

If you have questions about your employment contract or job offer letter, you can contact us at [email protected] or 647-204-8107.

“The material and information in this blog and this website are for general information only. They should not be relied on as legal advice or opinion. The authors make no claims, promises, or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness, or adequacy of any information referred to in this blog or its links. No person should act or refrain from acting in reliance on any information found on this website or blog. Readers should obtain appropriate professional advice from a lawyer duly licensed in the relevant jurisdiction. These materials do not create a lawyer-client relationship between you and any of the authors or the MacLeod Law Firm.”

Should you sign that Offer Letter?

By , September 13, 2017 4:04 pm

Have you been asked to sign back a written offer of employment, or sign an employment contract?

This offer letter or employment contract has likely been drafted by the company’s lawyer and it likely takes away some of your rights.

There is no such thing as a standard offer letter or employment contract. Some companies try to include many clauses in every offer/agreement. However, the fact is that some of the clauses are often negotiable.

We have reviewed hundreds of employment contracts over the years. Some are fair; some are not. MacLeod Law Firm can tell you which clauses in the contract are not fair in your circumstances and why.

If you are currently employed and have other job offers then you will never be in a better negotiating position than you are now. Take advantage of it with our help.

To determine whether the job offer is fair in your circumstances, we need to meet with you and discuss your situation. This is called an initial consultation.

During the initial consultation, we gather the facts we need to give you an informed legal opinion. MacLeod Law Firm provides you with comments and suggestions on how to protect and in some cases enhance your rights.

To read more case about employment offers and how affect employee rights see here, here and here.

If you have questions about your employment contract or offer letter, you can contact us at [email protected] or 647-204-8107.

“The material and information in this blog and this website are for general information only. They should not be relied on as legal advice or opinion. The authors make no claims, promises, or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness, or adequacy of any information referred to in this blog or its links. No person should act or refrain from acting in reliance on any information found on this website or blog. Readers should obtain appropriate professional advice from a lawyer duly licensed in the relevant jurisdiction. These materials do not create a lawyer-client relationship between you and any of the authors or the MacLeod Law Firm.”

The Danger of Termination Clauses

By , January 31, 2017 9:09 am

As we have written about in the past, termination clauses limit employee rights. The difference in what an employee receives when terminated can vary significantly between a contract with a termination clause, and one without. See here to learn more.

Despite the important role these clauses play, the law interpreting them continues to be in flux. Several decisions tell us that a termination clause should inform the employee that her benefits will continue for the statutory notice period under the Employment Standards ActSee here to learn more about these cases.

However, while a termination clause ought to describe that the employee is entitled to the continuation of benefits after termination, failure to do so will not necessarily render it unenforceable.

A 2016 decision reconfirms that principle.

The Case

In Wood v. Fred Deeley Imports Ltd., the employee received an offer letter before starting a new job.  She signed the letter and began her position.  The offer letter, which is a contract, had a termination clause that said the employer was entitled to:

terminate your employment at any time without cause by providing you with the two weeks’ Notice of Termination or pay in lieu thereof for each completed or partial year of employment with the company.

The employee argued that because the termination clause did not mention the continuation of her benefits it was not enforceable.

The court disagreed.  It relied on an Ontario Court of Appeal decision from 2005 called Roden. In that decision, the Court of Appeal held that where a termination clause was silent about the continuation of benefits, it was deemed to incorporate those benefits into the employment contract.  So, not mentioning benefits was not a problem.

In Wood, the court agreed and found the termination clause above was enforceable.

Lessons

Employees must be careful when signing an offer letter or employment contract.  If it contains a termination clause, it may significantly limit what you can get as notice of termination or pay in lieu of notice. It is a good idea to speak to an employment lawyer and review your contract in full before signing.

If you would like to speak to a lawyer at MacLeod Law Firm, you can reach us at [email protected] or 647-204-8107.

 “The material and information in this blog and this website are for general information only. They should not be relied on as legal advice or opinion. The authors make no claims, promises, or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness, or adequacy of any information referred to in this blog or its links. No person should act or refrain from acting in reliance on any information found on this website or blog. Readers should obtain appropriate professional advice from a lawyer duly licensed in the relevant jurisdiction. These materials do not create a lawyer-client relationship between you and any of the authors or the MacLeod Law Firm.”

 

 

 

 

 

The Devil is in the Details: Assessing your Job Offer or Offer Letter

By , February 22, 2016 10:58 am

Typically, employees think of a job offer letter as a document making them an offer of employment. They often focus on the salary, vacation and benefit entitlements and the start date. They might ignore the rest.

The risk is that a written job offer or a letter offering employment is actually a contract.  That offer letter may include clauses that limit an employee’s rights while working or limit her entitlements if the employer ends her employment.

We have several blogs on offer letters and employment contracts and what to look out for in assessing any offer.

Many offer letters include termination clauses. For information about termination clauses see here. To understand how a termination clause can change what you should receive if you are fired, see here.

You should also consider how probation clauses and attention clauses might affect your employment.  For more information about these see here.

Take Away

A job offer letter may be a contract. It is important it is to seek legal advice when signing any contract, whether for a new position or a new contract with your current employer.

Spending an hour with an employment lawyer reviewing each term of an offer letter will ensure that you know the legal implications of each clause in the document and may lead to changes to the offer that benefit you. If you have an employment contract that you would like reviewed, a lawyer at MacLeod Law Firm would be happy to assist you. Please contact us at [email protected] or 647-204-8107.

“The material and information provided on this blog and this website are for general information only and should not, in any respect, be relied on as legal advice or opinion. The authors make no claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness, or adequacy of any information linked or referred to or contained herein. No person should act or refrain from acting in reliance on any information found on this website or blog, without first retaining counsel and obtaining appropriate professional advice from a lawyer duly licensed to practice law in the relevant jurisdiction. These materials do not constitute legal advice and do not create a lawyer-client relationship between you and any of the authors or the MacLeod Law Firm.”

 

 

Why you Should Have a Lawyer Review your Employment Contract

By , October 22, 2014 12:33 pm

You have been offered a new job. You are excited about it. The offer letter seems fair and you are eager to start the position.  Why should you pay a lawyer to look over this employment contract?

Fast forward ten years. Your company is going through restructuring and you are now out of work. What that document said ten years earlier can dramatically affect your rights and entitlements when your employment ends.

Assessing an Employment Contract

The language of employment contracts is often technical and legal. It may sound fair and reasonable, but it may not be.

An Example

We often see employment contracts that state something like:  “Should your employment be terminated by the company without cause, you will be provided notice, or pay in lieu of notice, in accordance with the Employment Standards Act.” That sounds fair, right? The company is setting out that it will follow the law if it terminates you.

The problem is that this type of termination clause significantly limits an employee’s rights at termination.

In the scenario above, an employee who had a clause like this and had worked for the company for 10 years would be entitled to eight weeks’ notice of termination under the Employment Standards Act with an additional 10 weeks’ severance pay if the employer has a payroll of at least $2.5 million or more. If that clause was not in the employment contract, the employee would generally be entitled to between nine and 12 months’ reasonable notice of termination, or pay instead of this notice. If the employee was earning $52,000 a year, the difference in termination pay could be as much as $44,000.

This is only one example of the types of clauses found in an employment contract which appear reasonable but may dramatically affect your rights.

 

It usually takes one of our lawyers about an hour to review an employment contract and provide you with our comments. This investment can result in changes to the initial offer letter that benefit you.

If you are already working, or have been terminated, you can review our other blogs on wrongful dismissal and your other employment rights here.

If you have been asked to sign an employment contract, and you want to speak with an employment lawyer with experience in this area, contact us at [email protected] or 1-888-640-1728 (toll free) or 647-204-8107 (within the GTA).

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