Texas is an at-will state, which means you can terminate an employee without a reason so long as the termination is not based on discrimination or retaliation. At-will employees can also leave at any time and for any or no reason. However, some employees with special skills, or those who serve in upper management, are going to be harder to replace than someone performing a routine job. In these cases, you should do something to change their at-will status.
When recruiting skilled and high-level employees, consider offering them written agreements to gain benefits not found with at-will employment. A Texas employment contracts lawyer can provide this customized document. At Sparks Law, our experienced attorneys are here to help you memorialize a skilled employee’s salaries, benefits, duties, and responsibilities in a written agreement.
An employment agreement is a contract, which means that the employer and employee agree to give up something of value to get something else. Employers give up money and benefits to gain talent and expertise. Employees give up the ability to look elsewhere for a job to get an appropriate salary and security that at-will employment does not offer.
Written contracts help avoid misunderstandings. Employees know what duties they will have upon hiring, what benefits they are entitled to, and what the employer’s duty to them is.
All contracts contain certain information, such as how long the agreement is in effect. Employment agreements’ specific covenants usually include:
A skillful local attorney could craft employment agreements specific to a client’s needs.
Although Texas gives credence to the autonomy of the employer-employee relationship, the federal government does step in to make sure employers do not abuse the balance of power in employment agreements. The Equal Employment Opportunity Act (EEOC) forbids employers from discriminating against employees based on race, religion, gender, sexual identity, age, disability, or genetic profile by offering contracts to some workers but not others in the same job category. A Texas attorney at our firm could ensure an employment agreement does not violate federal law.
Employment agreements are just one tool in an employer’s arsenal that can help retain coveted employees. Employees benefit from these agreements because they have a time frame to develop and contribute skills without fear of termination without cause. They also gain the peace of mind that comes with a set wage and benefits.
If problems ensue, a written agreement can help settle disputes more easily because both parties’ actions can be scrutinized for breach of contract. Employees who do not fulfill their memorialized duties can be terminated and employers who fail to provide negotiated benefits will pay a price for their breach. An experienced attorney could draft or review employment contracts for Texas business owners to avoid these potential issues and benefit both the employer and employee.
A written agreement can preserve key workers at your company and benefit all parties. Sparks Law specializes in providing these essential contracts to foster your business success.
Your success depends on the talents of your employees, so it is important to consult a Texas employment contracts lawyer to learn how you can protect these crucial relationships. Call for your confidential consultation today.