Employment Solicitors

Settlement Agreements

What are settlement agreements and how do they work?

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Termination agreement’,severance agreement’, ‘compromise agreement’, ‘exit agreement’ – these are all terms our team of employment solicitors have heard used by people referring to a settlement agreement.

What is a settlement agreement?

A settlement agreement (previously called a ‘compromise agreement’) is a legal agreement between you and your employer under which you will give up your rights to bring certain claims against your employer.

Often these agreements are introduced as part of negotiations regarding the termination of your employment, but that is not always the case. It is also possible for you, as the employee, to instigate settlement discussions.

Regardless of the circumstances, it can be a daunting time for an employee, especially if you are presented with settlement terms unexpectedly or find yourself in unfamiliar circumstances and are not clear how to proceed. Even those individuals who are more acquainted with the term ‘settlement agreement’ may find themselves wondering if the deal they are being offered is fair and whether they should sign the agreement.

How can we help?

It is a legal requirement that you get advice from a qualified professional but that is not the only reason to seek legal input.

Our team of specialist employment solicitors have dealt with settlement agreements in all manner of circumstances and can advise you on the best way to address your particular situation. They will discuss with you the terms of the deal with which you are presented and the options available to you and ensure you are comfortable before signing the agreement if you choose to do so.

It is often useful if you have kept a note about what happened in the lead up to settlement negotiations and what has been said to you, as well as providing us with a copy of your contract of employment, so do keep that in mind.

An employer will usually contribute towards the legal costs for you to see a solicitor or qualified adviser and this is something you can check if it has not been raised previously.

If you would like to speak with us regarding a settlement agreement with which you have been presented or settlement negotiations, please contact us to make an appointment with one of our employment team.

Mel McCrum Profile

Mel McCrum

Partner, Head of Department

Employment

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Settlement Agreement Resources

Here are some resources to help employees and employers understand more about Settlement Agreements and how to do deal with them. Please contact a member of our team if you would like any further information.

Our team have prepared a blog post which goes through some of the questions we are regularly asked.

Read our Q&A on Settlement Agreements

Our team have prepared a useful guide with some top tips on what you should do if your employer hands you a settlement agreement

Read our settlement agreement top tips

You may be an employer planning a number of dismissals perhaps due to a restructuring or redundancy exercise, with several employees requiring advice on settlement agreements.  Or you may be a trade union with a number of members requiring advice on settlement agreements at short notice.  We can help by advising all the affected employees on their settlement agreements.

  • We will save you the time and costs of dealing with multiple legal advisers by providing the required independent legal advice to all affected employees on their settlement agreements.  
  • Whilst employees are obviously free to choose which solicitor advises them, group settlement agreements are a convenient and less stressful solution for those unfamiliar with having to seek out and visit a solicitor in an already difficult situation.
  • If more convenient, we will come to your chosen venue.  
  • Our team of specialist solicitors are all experienced in advising on settlement agreements, often at very short notice.

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