The greater San Francisco area has a unique job market. The high cost of living translates to some of the highest wages in the country, and many of these jobs are in the constantly evolving technology sector. These unique conditions can create complicated employment agreements that generally favor the companies that draft them. Before signing any employment agreement, let our experienced San Francisco employment agreement attorneys review the documents to ensure that your legal rights are being protected.
Here are some of the most important terms of your employment agreement:
Consider the length of time that you want to be bound to an employment agreement. Many employees like the security that comes with a lengthy period of guaranteed employment. If, however, you find that the job is not a good fit for you, a lengthy employment contract could become unbearable. You also want to be able to renegotiate the terms of your employment at regular intervals.
The best way to ensure this is by having an employment contract that must be renewed. The term of an employment contract is also affected by the industry you work in, market conditions, the type of work you perform, and other factors. Our attorneys can help determine the right contract length for your specific employment situation.
For most employees, compensation is the most important term of any employment contract. But here in the Bay Area and Silicon Valley, most employment compensation is not a simple matter of wages. Most employees receive health insurance and other benefits. Stock options are a major consideration – especially for the employees who take the chance to work for a startup. Our lawyers can help you determine whether a compensation package adequately compensates you for your time and experience.
Another common issue unique to Silicon Valley is the ownership of intellectual property. Here, in the cradle of innovation, a worker’s ideas are often their most valuable asset. Your employer owns the work it pays you to create. It does not own all the ideas you will ever have, and it is important to distinguish your intellectual property from that you create for your employer. The terms of an employment contract should be clear and unambiguous in order to prevent future problems with any ownership issues.
Mandatory arbitration clauses are becoming a common feature in all types of contracts, though California has tried to ban mandatory arbitration in employment agreements. Arbitration can be a helpful solution for resolving legal disputes, but committing yourself to mandatory, binding arbitration can limit your ability to get legal relief in the court system. Consult with a lawyer about whether your employer’s proposed mandatory arbitration provisions are permissible and reasonable.
At Olivier & Schreiber LLP, our experienced employment lawyers know how to protect employees’ rights in all types of contractual provisions. Our work can help you prevent employment disputes and protect your legal rights. Call (415) 484-0980 or visit our website to schedule your consultation today.
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