Growing Your Alberta Business Using Employment Agreements
When you hire a new employee, you are faced with the decision of whether or not you should have this employee sign an employment agreement. This agreement, or employee contract, will detail the employer-employee relationship that will be entered into between the two of you. Remember that an offer of employment is a contract if accepted. Kahane Law Office in Calgary, Alberta is a law firm with a dedicated employment agreement team. Call 403-225-8810 now for help.
The following is a brief overview of what these agreements entail and the advantages and disadvantages of choosing to use employment agreements in Alberta. This is not intended to be legal advice, especially since there are many factors that can affect what will be the best decision for your unique business. For personalized guidance, you should consult with an experienced Alberta attorney. The Alberta government and the CRA also have some good information on deciding if someone you want to work for you, is a contractor or an employee. In both cases a proper contract is vital.
What Are Employment Agreements?
When you enter into many different legal relationships, the expectation exists that you sign a contracts. For example, you sign a contract promising to pay your phone bill, you sign contracts with business partners, and you sign a contract with your landlord, in the form of a lease. Similar to these documents, an employee agreement provides the employer and employee the opportunity to outline and acknowledge what each party can expect from this professional relationship moving forward.
What Terms Calgary Lawyers Include In Employment Agreements
Each employee relationship is unique. For example, a basic employment agreement might define:
- The duration of the job: The employee often agree to work for a minimum amount of time. For example, a common time frame includes one year contracts. Alternatively, employees acknowledge and agree that the position accepted is a temporary position. Employment agreements protect you in these situations;
- Hours worked: The agreement usually stipulates how many hours per week the employee works, and often even list the specific hours;
- Salary: This section details the employee’s salary or wage, how often they often payment occurs (for example, bi-weekly, semi monthly or monthly), and if and how opportunities for pay increases happen;
- Benefits: The benefits that the employer offers;
- Responsibilities: The employer outlines the roles and responsibilities expected of the employee. When well defined in the employment agreement, less disagreements of intentions come up; and lastly
- Additional terms: The agreement can include any additional terms that are specific to the position or to the company. This might include special details regarding probationary periods, policies regarding personal days and/or holiday pay, as well as any other company-specific procedures that are of importance.
Most clients need clarity on what to include in an employee agreement. An Alberta attorney helps you draft an employment agreement specific to your business.
Why Would You Want to Have Your Employees Sign Agreements?
Many reasons exist for ensuring all employees sign an agreement. For example, these reasons include:
Reduce Turnover Rates with Employment Agreements
Trained and knowledgeable employees are valuable assets. Nothing ultimately forces your top employees to stay with your business. However, the chances of them leaving decreases if they face legal penalties for breach of contract.
Attract Better Employees with Proper Employment Contracts
Most companies try to convince a top recruit to choose their company as a place for them to work. An employment agreement often provides the enticement needed to move them over. If the agreement guarantees that the employee has a place with your company for a long period of time, with a salary that they are pleased with, they may choose your job opportunity to enjoy this security.
Reduce Miscommunication and Employee Problems
An employment agreement can make it clear what you expect from your new employee. This often reduces confusion or stops redundant task performance.
The Disadvantages of Having Employee Agreements
Employment agreements do not just protect the employers; they also protect the employees. Even if major changes happen within your business, contracts legally bound you to the terms you outlined in your agreement. If you do not deliver on your end regarding salary, duration of employment, or any of the other terms, employees can take legal action against your business.
Finally, to protect your business from these types of risks, it is always best to consult with an Alberta employment lawyer. Ask them about drafting and/or negotiating employee agreements.
Employment Agreement Lawyers In Calgary
The Lawyers at Kahane Law Office can help with your employment agreement legal needs. CONNECT NOW. We can be reached at 403-225-8810 locally in Calgary, Alberta or toll-free at 1-877-225-8817 or email us directly here.