Employment contracts are rare in the state of New Jersey. These contracts generally include the terms of employment such as the duration of employment, the amount someone’s going to get paid, the type of specific work, vacations, and things of that nature, as well as the reasons that someone can be terminated and other grounds to cancel a contract.
Nationally, employment contracts are rare because management does not want to be confined to the terms of the contract. From the employer’s perspective, it is better to have the employee on an at-will basis so that management can make decisions without being subject to the terms and conditions set forth by the employment contract.
Every contract is different. The analysis of any fact pattern will be specific to the terms of those contracts. Typically, companies may use employment contracts involving higher-level professionals, CEOs, or CFOs of major corporations where the company wants the employee also to be bound to obligations of the contract. Other reasons may include if the employee is highly sought after or highly desired.
Q: What is my recourse if I want to get out of my employment because of a personality conflict or the work is not what I thought it was going to be?
The first step of the analysis is to look at the terms of the contract. Usually employment contracts will have a section where they discuss termination of the relationship or termination of the contract. Sometimes there is broader latitude as to how each of the parties can make decisions regarding that relationship going forward or dissolving that relationship in midstream. Sometimes there is less flexibility; sometimes it is much more difficult to get out of those contracts before the term is up.
It is a creature of contract, meaning it’s the question and the answer is contained within the language of that particular contract that one is analyzing. There is no general rule or general application as to any question. Every single relationship in an employment contract will be different and any questions have to be addressed by analyzing the language of that particular contract.