Settlement Agreement Case Study 1
Following a badly managed internal restructure, we were instructed by a senior employee with 12 years’ service to advise her upon her options. The consultation that took place was ineffective and the Employee was left unclear about the future of her role, her responsibilities and the team she would manage. She felt that she had been undermined and deliberately excluded from projects that she would normally have been substantially involved in. Her health deteriorated as a result and she commenced sick leave, resulting in her feeling further isolated and unsupported. She was unable to envisage how it would be possible to return to work and in the hope of resolving issues, we assisted her to draft a grievance. During the grievance process, the employee considered that the relationship with her employer was damaged, trust and confidence had been breached and a return would not be possible. We made a without prejudice approach to the Company, enquiring whether they would be willing to consider an exit under a settlement agreement, setting out the terms that the employee would be agreeable to. The employer responded favourably to the idea and following negotiation of the financial package, terms were agreed and the agreement was successfully completed. In addition to the financial aspects of the settlement, we were able to agree to the waiver of post-termination restrictions and a reference to enable the employee to move forward.
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