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Debunking Employment Contract Myths

There are many employees which truly do not understand their rights within their contract. They written contract of employment tends to only be read briefly and then they are surprised when they eventually have to rely on it -- often without understanding of what it really means. Here are some of the things that employees typically believe that aren’t always true.

Terms of Employment Are Set In Writing

Having a contract of employment doesn’t always take the form of one document. It can also incorporate terms from different sources and may be a written or verbal agreement. Express terms are considered to be those that are agreed between the parties, such as job description, notice, wages, sick pay, and hours of work. These terms could be found in many different documents such as the written statement of employment elements, the job advertisement, payslips, the staff handbook, or the contract itself.

Employer Can’t Force Relocation

Your employer can force you to relocate if you have a ‘mobility clause’ in your contract. This would allow for your employer to move you to another location within the limits that are mentioned in the contract. If you do not have a mobility contract, then you can refuse moving and be entitled to receive a redundancy payment. However, if you are being ask to relocate to a short distance, then you may lose.

Employer Can’t Vary The Terms of Employment Without Consent

Your consent may have been given when you entered into your contract. There may be an express right reserved for your employer to make required changes as needed. This can apply to a change in your hours of work or a change in your role. Your employer will be in a stronger position if the contract allows for them to make this change.

Employer Must Pay Outstanding Bonus Upon Leaving

In situations where there is a clause in your contract that states that you must be employed and not under notice ‘as at the bonus payment date’ then you may be at risk to lose your bonus entitlement when you leave.

Notice Period When Leaving Job

If your employer has reserved the right in your contract, you might be paid in lieu of the notice or even put on leave when you finally resign or give your own notice. Many individuals try to work for as long as possible during this period because they think that prospective employers have a preference for candidates that are still employed. However, previous employers often want to end everything immediately once a termination has even been mentioned. If you are put on leave, then you are not required to attend work during the period of time on your notice, but also cannot start another job either. This can have a large impact if you are dealing with a notice that covers a longer period of time. The more that you familiarize yourself with your contact, the easier it will be for you to prepare for notices and other concerns.


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