When you find a potentially rewarding job opportunity, the employer may ask you to sign an employment agreement to secure the position. Your employment agreement can work for you by helping you understand and protect your rights.
However, some employment agreements can contain provisions that might cause more harm than good. Here are a few warning signs to watch out for that may warrant second thoughts or legal guidance.
“In the company’s sole discretion”
This phrase is often a major red flag. First, it may indicate that the company holds the sole authority to change or terminate your employment without your input. It may also compromise your work hours, pay, benefits and other aspects of your job.
Harmful severance conditions
Many employers offer severance pay to exiting workers not terminated for wrongdoing or cause. Such provisions are somewhat common,, but beware of attached conditions that silence your right to free speech or compromise your rights under federal labor law.
Vague compensation provisions
Employment contracts should clearly detail your compensation and inform you about overtime and other wage and hour issues. Consider it a red flag if your potential employer hands you a contract with ambiguous (or overly complicated) compensation language.
Fortunately, you do not have to sign any contract until you have read and understood its contents. If the employer insists you sign it immediately, that is probably yet another red flag about the position.
Experienced legal guidance can help you make sense of a dense or wordy employment agreement to ensure it serves your best interests. As a bonus, you will be able to learn more about the many ways Ohio employment laws protect workers.