This is a guest post by Tayeb Hyderally
Ty Hyderally is a labor law attorney in New Jersey concentrating in employment law, covering topics related to age discrimination and harassment.
The current economic depression favors the employers when the employment situation is concerned. With so many applicants looking for a job, the small number of available positions makes it an employer’s market. Employers have a multitude of applicants to select from and can be more discerning in their selection. The large number of applicants makes it trickier to be noticed from the swarm of fellow applicants. As job hunting becomes harder, it is becoming more vital for job applicants to know the fundamentals of the regulations governing employment.
Employment contracts indicate the conditions that govern the employer-employee relationship. The agreement should typically include the length of the contract and the conditions for termination. It is necessary to note that most of the employment contracts in the United States are on “at-will” or mutual understanding basis. This simply means that the employment relationship can be ended by any one of the parties involved. Both the employer and the employee can at their own initiative and for whatever motivation they have end the relationship. Anyone of them can do it provided that the grounds for the termination are not in violation of federal and state laws.
Signed employment contracts are binding to both parties as long as it contains no provisions that are contrary to state and federal laws. No employment contract can take precedence over penal provisions about employment procedures and regulations. For example, a contract that eliminates employer responsibility to compensate overtime work by a prospective employee cannot be binding on both parties. A “non-compete” agreement on the other hand can control the job opportunities available to a former employee. This provision is usually sought by companies in extremely competitive and scientific fields to preserve trade secrets and to prevent the competition from gaining advantage of the experience gained by the former employee. Job seekers and current employees who are in these kinds of situation should seek help from a skilled labor attorney.
Job applicants and employees of all businesses all over the United States are protected by the Equal Employment Opportunity Act. This act is enforced by the EEOC, a commission that guard employees and applicants from employer discrimination based on sex, age, religion, ethnicity, color, and disability.
Jobseekers should not just sign anything that their prospective employers present to them to gain employment. Doing so can lead to legal problems and impediments that may require a lot to get out of. In job hunting and in everything we do, knowing the law is a definite advantage.