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Employment law: Negotiating severance package can be challenging

Whenever the economy is uncertain, some struggling businesses in Wisconsin might consider letting some of the staff go. In many cases, the first ones to be offered severance packages are the older workers. The shock of losing a job in a career they have built over many years might cause workers to focus on their misfortune rather than securing the best possible severance package in compliance with employment law.

Several economic and legal issues must be considered during negotiations for the employment severance agreement, especially for those who have existing employment agreements. They must also gather information about their legal rights. Employees over the age of 40 must receive 21 days notice for consideration of the company's intention to offer a severance package, and they will also have seven days after signing the agreement during which time they may revoke their decisions.

Severance agreements are contracts that are legally binding documents that are signed to ensure no disputes can arise later. For that reason, it is important to address every last detail because there will be no opportunity to resolve forgotten matters at a later date. Some of these issues will require careful negotiations, particularly for employees who are in management or executive positions, since, as in any negotiations, both parties will want to come out on top.

Because this could be an extremely complicated process that will likely determine the employee's future financial stability, many Wisconsin workers choose to utilize the skills of an experienced employment law attorney. A lawyer can navigate all the negotiations with the employer in pursuit of the best possible severance package. Furthermore, the attorney can help to ensure that nothing is left unaddressed.

Source: Forbes, "16 Key Issues In Negotiating An Employment Severance Package", Richard Harroch, April 14, 2018

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