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What is a Settlement Agreement?
A Settlement Agreement is a legally binding agreement that is entered into between an employer and an employee to bring an employment dispute to an end. The agreement will set out the terms of the agreement in writing, where the employee agrees not to bring a claim against their employer in respect of issues named in the agreement, in return for certain conditions – normally a financial sum.
Can I stay in my job if I enter into a settlement agreement?
The majority of settlement agreements bring the employment relationship to an end, however this is not always the case. A settlement agreement can merely be used to bring a dispute to an end and you can continue in your employment.
Can I use a settlement agreement after an Employment tribunal Claim has been raised?
Yes. You can use a settlement agreement to bring a dispute to an end at any stage, even after an Employment Tribunal claim has been raised.
Why should I use a settlement agreement?
Settlement Agreements are a useful means of bringing an employment dispute to an end, and avoid claims going before an Employment Tribunal. The parties to a settlement agreement can resolve their dispute and agree on the outcome more quickly, and in a more cost-efficient way.
What does a Settlement Agreement do?
A Settlement Agreement gives both employer and employee certainty. When a settlement agreement is signed the employee gives up their right to bring a claim against their employer in return for consideration – usually, but not always, a cash sum – to compensate them for waving their rights.
Is a settlement agreement legally binding?
If a settlement has been properly executed, it is legally binding on both employer and employee. There are however certain conditions that must be met in order for a settlement agreement to be valid and legally binding.
What are the advantages of a settlement agreement for an employee?
If you are an employee, a settlement agreement allows you to receive compensation for a dispute that has occurred during the course of your employment. It may also allow you to receive other benefits such as a good reference or favorable contract termination date, minimizing the time you are out of work if your employment relationship is to end. A settlement agreement allows you to bring the dispute to an end without having to take your case to an Employment tribunal which can be costly and time consuming. It can also avoid the risk that the Employment Tribunal does not find in your favour.
What are the advantages of settlement agreements for an employers?
Using a settlement agreement to bring a dispute with an employee to an end can be cost effective, and avoid any negative publicity that may come with Employment Tribunal proceedings. When properly drafted, a settlement agreement ensures that the employee cannot later bring a claim, providing a clean break for both parties.
Serttlement Agreement Advice Edinburgh - Our lawyers will provide expert legal advice on your Settlement Agreement
In order for the agreement to become a legally binding one, the employee requires to obtain independent advice about the terms of the agreement and the legal consequences of entering into such an agreement. Given this requirement, it is normal practice that the employer pays the legal fees of the solicitor involved in providing advice to the employee. This will be a term in the agreement itself and the advice provided is entirely independent and in no way affected by the fact that the employer is paying for this advice to the employee.
At Employment Law Edinburgh we advise clients on a daily basis about settlement agreements. If you have received such an agreement then contact us immediately. We will advise you on the terms of the agreement and in particular provide guidance on whether the financial "lump sum" is appropriate . We often return to employers on behalf of our clients to discuss increasing the compensation payable. Please contact us without delay if you have received such an offer.
Contact our Specialist Solicitors at Employment Law Edinburgh
No matter what your circumstances might be we can advise you on settlement agreements.
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