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What a terminated worker should look for in a severance package

California is an employment-at-will, state like most of her sister states. Many workers in San Diego who are employed via private businesses may not have an employment contract. Even those who do will likely sign an agreement with a clause providing that the employer may terminate the employee at any time and for any reason, the contract notwithstanding.

However, because even at-will employees have certain rights and benefits available to them under California law, employers who are letting an employee go will often offer them some sort of severance package, or payments and other benefits in exchange for certain waivers and promises from the employee.

Signing a severance package is not necessarily a bad thing, and it can even be a really good deal for the employee and a chance to make the most out of a bad situation. However, employees need to be aware of certain items a severance package will often include, as they can affect the employee's rights.

For one, the severance package will likely include detailed information about what benefits a person is going to receive under the package and how those benefits are getting figured. This not only includes information about wages already owed and the additional severance pay, it also includes important information pertaining to vacation time, unreimbursed business expenses and, especially, health insurance.

On the other side of the coin, employees need to be aware of what they are agreeing to in exchange for their benefits. In addition to waiving most of their rights to sue in connection with their termination, they also often agree to keep quiet about the negative aspects of their job and their separation from the company. They also may have to sign a non-compete agreement.

Post Type: TOPICAL