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Review and Negotiation of Employment-Related Agreements in New Jersey

Given the increased mobility of employees in today’s job market, employers frequently present employees with various types of agreements that attempt to protect their business interests and/or insulate them from potential liability. Accordingly, it is important for employees to retain legal counsel before signing any such agreements to ensure they fully understand the terms and conditions of any such agreements.

Understanding the Purpose of an Employment-Related Agreement

In general, employers require employees to sign employment-related agreements (such as employment agreements, severance agreements, non-competition agreements, and non-solicitation agreements) to protect their legitimate business interests. Legitimate business interests include, but are not limited to, confidential and proprietary information, trade secrets, pricing information, and customer lists.

Types of Employment-Related Agreements

The most common types of employment-related agreements are as follows:

Employment Agreements  

Employment Agreements typically set forth the terms and conditions of employment, and include clauses pertaining to job duties and responsibilities, compensation, and notification of termination.

Non-Competition Agreements 

Non-Competition Agreements generally prohibit an employee from performing services for a competitor.  In New Jersey, non-competition agreements are generally valid and enforceable if they are narrowly tailored and reasonable given the circumstances.

Non-Solicitation Agreements    

In general, New Jersey law recognizes two types of non-solicitation clauses. Specifically, courts recognize non-solicitation clauses that prohibit the solicitation of a former employer’s customers and non-solicitation clauses that prohibit the solicitation of a former employer’s employees.  

Severance Agreements

At its core, a severance agreement is an agreement between an employer and the departing employee where the departing employee releases potential legal claims against the employer in exchange for receiving monetary benefits to which the employee would not otherwise be entitled.

Important Factors to Consider in Negotiating Employment-Related Agreements

The are several important factors to consider when negotiating these types of contracts. For example, when presented with an employment agreement, it is important to negotiate compensation, the term of the agreement as well as compensation due upon termination of the agreement. With regard to non-competition and non-solicitation agreements, it is important to negotiate the duration of the post-employment restrictions as well as the scope of any such restrictions.

The Role of an Employment Agreement Attorney

A trusted employment attorney is a valuable asset throughout the review and negotiation process. An attorney can assist in the negotiation process and can help you understand the complex legal provisions contained in these types of agreements. In addition, a trusted employment attorney can provide you with suggested revisions that are more favorable for you. 

Work with a New Jersey Employment Agreement Attorney

The New Jersey employment lawyers at CMS use their extensive experience to provide you with insight regarding the review of employment-related agreements, such as employment agreements, non-competition agreements, and non-solicitation agreements. In addition, CMS employment lawyers utilize their significant experience to strongly advocate for their clients and provide strategic legal advice to help them navigate through complex negotiations regarding these types of Agreements. If you need assistance with the review and/or negotiations of employment-related agreements, please contact Curcio Mirzaian Sirot LLC

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