We are specialist Settlement Agreement Solicitors.
If you are an employee we can usually advise you for FREE.
FREE SERVICE – We are able to offer most clients a free service for advice on settlement agreements. Almost all settlement agreements include a contribution to the employee’s legal fees for having the settlement agreement reviewed and agreed with a solicitor. In the vast majority of cases we are able to work to this budget set by your employer. This means that you get expert advice from specialist employment law solicitors for free. We send our invoice directly to your employer for payment so you have nothing to worry about.
We are specialist Settlement Agreement Solicitors and can help you obtain the best possible agreement, wherever you are in the U.K.
Help via telephone and email: we act for clients in all parts of the country via telephone and email. It is not necessary for you to visit our offices.
Call us now on 01483 303636 to talk to one of our solicitors about how we can help you.
Read our testimonials from Employee clients.
“I would also like to take this opportunity to thank you for your outstanding assistance in dealing with this matter. You clearly and concisely explained all of the pertinent details to me throughout the process and greatly assisted me in achieving an amicable and satisfactory outcome.”- Mr S, Surrey
“I would also like to thank you very much for your swiftness in dealing with my Settlement Agreement within such a short timescale. You were very helpful yesterday in explaining all of the legal jargon to me and how this would affect me in the future. I would not hesitate to recommend you to anyone who requires legal advice on employment law.”- Ms T M, West Sussex.
What is a Settlement Agreement?
A settlement agreement (previously compromise agreement) is a legally binding contract between an employee and an employer which takes away the employee’s rights to make a claim in a court or tribunal. In exchange, the employer promises various payments, usually beyond what the employee is legally entitled to. Settlement agreements can be used to end an employment relationship; settle disputes whilst still employed or to settle claims already issued at the Employment Tribunal.
In order for a settlement agreement to be binding the terms of the agreement must be in writing, it must relate to a particular complaint/dispute and you must receive advice from a suitably qualified lawyer or authorised member of a trade union (who is identified in the settlement agreement), who needs to confirm that a contract of insurance in relation to the advice exists. Strictly speaking, most solicitors can advise on settlement agreements but only a solicitor with experience in employment law can give expert advice on the full effect and meaning of the typical terms found in settlement agreements. We have a team of highly experienced employment law solicitors who are all able to provide expert settlement agreement advice.
Will I need to pay tax on the settlement sum?
Compensation sums up to £30,000 can usually be paid tax free. There are some situations where sums less than £30,000 may be taxable, for example, if the sums offered constitute wages, contractual pay in lieu of notice or holiday pay. If the employee prefers, any taxable payment can often be diverted to a pension fund, free of tax. We are able to provide expert guidance on the tax treatment of the payments you are due to receive.
Will I need to keep the Settlement Agreement confidential?
Every settlement agreement is different but it is common that employers will want to keep the terms and sums of money paid to remain confidential between you and them.
Will I be able to bring any claims against my employer after I sign the Settlement Agreement?
As a general rule the aim of a settlement agreement is to settle a particular issue (e.g. redundancy or a dispute), however, most employers will also want satisfaction that you will not pursue any other claims against them (particularly if your employment is terminating). There are some claims which cannot be waived via a settlement agreement and it is common that accrued pension rights and unknown personal injury claims are not waived.
Will I get a reference?
If the settlement agreement is to terminate your employment, then it is common to agree a reference. We have a strong success rate of securing suitable references for our clients.
How long will it take?
We aim to agree terms of a settlement agreement as quickly as possible. Every settlement agreement is different but it may be possible to advise you and confirm our advice by signing the settlement agreement the SAME DAY that you instruct us.
Can I instruct you to negotiate an improved settlement sum?
Yes! If you are unhappy with the terms of the settlement agreement, we can help negotiate a better package. ‘If you don’t ask you don’t get.’
How much does your advice cost?
It is common for an employer to pay a contribution to the cost of this legal advice. Settlement agreements vary in complexity. Solicitors normally charge between £350 and £1,000 (plus VAT) for advising an employee on a settlement agreement. If substantial negotiations on sums and terms are required, the cost may be more than what your employer offers to pay. However, where relatively straight forward and negotiations for a higher sum are not necessary, we aim to advise employees within the sum offered by the employer which means that in most situations we are able to advise employees for FREE. If the sum offered by your employer is not sufficient we will inform you and we can often negotiate a higher sum with the employer.
I’m an employer, can I instruct you to draft settlement agreements?
Yes. If you are an employer and require a settlement agreement to be drafted and/or advice on whether to offer a settlement agreement and/or how to conduct a s. 111A Employment Rights Act 1996 meeting, please do not hesitate to contact us.
Still need convincing? Please have a look at our testimonial pages.
“Your professional services are so good.” – Mr J H, HR Manager
Please note that on 29 July 2013 Compromise Agreements were re-named Settlement Agreements. For an overview of this change please read our Settlement Agreements blog post