If you have an agreement with your employer, they should never breach that contract, but alas, this is not a perfect world. Business can be unmerciful, but when you are mistreated in this manner, there are legal courses of action you may take. Below we’ll discuss what an employer breach of contract is and what you can do about it.
What Is an Employer Breach of Contract?
Just like any formal contract, an employment contract is a legally binding document that establishes a written agreement between you—the employee—and your employer. If any of the terms of that contract are broken, it is considered a breach. Below are a few examples of employment contract breaches:
An employer promises to pay you an annual salary of $50,000, but decides to start you at a lower amount.
An employer fires you without a good reason, despite a two-year contract that says otherwise.
An employer dismisses you without giving you notice or pay, despite contract terms.
Despite a breach, it is important to make sure that every term you negotiate with your employer is written down in your contract. While verbal contracts are legally binding, they can be difficult to prove.
What Can I Do if My Contract Is Breached?
If you believe your employer is in breach of your contract, check the hard copy and make absolutely sure. You may not understand clauses written in your contract, which is done on purpose, that may allow your employer to “breach contract.” For this reason, it’s important to have an employment lawyer go over your contract.
If the breach is valid, you should take the problem to your employer first. Maybe there was some miscommunication and your issue may be an easy fix. If this fails, you can try some form of mediation, but if that doesn’t work, you may be forced to take legal action. As an employee, you may have a claim for damages for the following reasons:
A non-payment of wages or travel expenses
A non-payment of holiday or sick pay
Changes to the terms and conditions of your contract that you didn’t sign off on
A non-payment during your notice period
Not every action that your employer takes, that you may deem unfair, constitutes as a breach of contract. For example, an employer may have the power to relocate you and not pay you if you refuse; an employer can also limit when you can take vacations. An attorney can help you understand the difference between these types of allowances and an actual breach of contract.
Contact our Oklahoma City employment lawyers at Mazaheri Law Firm today. Aside from your work contract, we represent employees in cases involving discrimination, unpaid wages, severance agreements and sexual harassment.
Call (405) 645-6022 or contact us online today to get started.