When you are laid off due to no fault of your own, your employer may ask you to sign a severance agreement. Severance agreements generally provide an employee with additional compensation in exchange for the release of any and all claims that may have arisen during their employment. While many employees believe that they have no choice but to accept the offer and sign the severance agreement, consulting with the New York severance lawyers at Fitapelli & Schaffer will reveal a multitude of options and allow an employee to make the most of an otherwise difficult situation.
It is important to remember that you are not required to sign a severance agreement. By signing a severance agreement, you forgo your right to sue for most claims that arose during the course of your employment including discrimination, wrongful termination, and sexual harassment. However, Fair Labor Standards Act and Family Medical Leave Act claims are non-waivable and if your employment severance agreement purports to waive any such claims, you should contact the New York severance lawyers at Fitapelli & Schaffer because you may still bring suit against your employer. If you believe you have a viable claim, you should contact our office because our attorneys can use this information to negotiate a better package or bring a lawsuit to enforce your rights. Otherwise, once you sign your agreement, you will have to abide by its terms and a court is likely to find the severance agreement binding where you have knowingly and voluntarily signed a waiver.
Most employees believe they can negotiate their severance package without the assistance of an attorney. However, employees who attempt to do so often underestimate the value of their potential claims and receive fewer benefits under their package. Furthermore, employees are often unaware that they have potential claims against their employer that can be used as leverage in severance negotiations or can result in a large settlement with the employer. The New York severance pay lawyers at Fitapelli & Schaffer will review your severance agreement to determine whether it is fair and, where possible, negotiate a better severance agreement on your behalf.
Please remember that you only have a limited time to sign the severance package. Therefore, you should contact the New York severance attorneys at Fitapelli & Schaffer as soon as possible to provide them with sufficient time to review your case.
You should also contact one of our attorneys if you do not understand any of the terms of your agreement. Your severance package should be written in a way that reflects your understanding and we advise you not to sign any agreement before understanding the consequences of doing so.
Fitapelli & Schaffer, LLP has been successful in negotiating additional compensation, payment for unused vacation and sick days, extensions of health insurance, unemployment benefits, positive letters of reference, and outplacement services. Contact us today to schedule your free consultation.