Negotiating a settlement agreement
When employees are offered a settlement agreement, they should give careful consideration to what they want to achieve by signing such an agreement. Employees seeking advice broadly fall into one of three categories:
Happy with the deal and the terms
There is no legal requirement to advise on the merits of the claim or help negotiate the terms and some employees simply require the adviser to “rubber stamp” the agreement advising on the terms in accordance with the statutory requirements as outlined above.
Happy with the deal but not the terms
Some employees may be happy with the financial deal itself but are not happy with the other terms in the agreement as proposed by the employer. It is not unusual for the terms to be negotiated on before the parties reach agreement although this is likely to increase the fee your solicitor is charging. Whether terms can be altered will very much depend on the circumstances of the individual case and their bargaining position.
Not happy with the deal or the terms
Some employees are not satisfied with either the financial deal or the terms of the agreement and will instruct their solicitor to negotiate on both fronts. The ability to negotiate will very much depend on the circumstances and strength of the individual’s case. The stronger the legal basis for a claim, the more likely it is that employers will be receptive to negotiations to increase the compensation and amend terms in the employee’s favour.