216.696.8700

Practice Group

Employment & Severance Negotations Attorneys

Whether you are starting a new job or exiting your current company, the attorneys in KJK’s Employment & Severance Negotiations group are your voice at the negotiating table. We represent executives, professionals and other employees in the artful negotiation of employment and severance agreements.

Are you an Employer?

EXECUTIVE EMPLOYMENT AGREEMENTS

Drawing on extensive experience including both national firm and in-house work, our Employment & Severance Negotiations team is uniquely positioned to help you achieve the best possible outcome for compensation and benefit terms in your executive contract. This includes bonus and incentive compensation, deferred compensation and equity and stock awards. In addition, we understand the importance of negotiating strong severance terms in advance so that our clients are protected in the future.

SEVERANCE PACKAGES

Our attorneys also represent employees when they are terminated or choose to resign. We work with our clients to identify their goals and then seek to maximize the terms of any severance/separation agreement. When the situation warrants, we pursue legal and contractual claims to ensure our clients receive favorable compensation, benefits and reasonable non-economic terms.

How We Can Help

Common Legal Services for Employees

We take pride in our attention to detail and our track record of delivering results that cater to each client’s individual needs and goals. Our executive employment and severance negotiations attorneys successfully negotiate favorable results for our clients, including with the following:

Arbitration Services
  • Arbitration
  • Breach of Contract
  • Constructive Discharge
Executive & Professional Employment Agreements & Severance Packages
  • Golden Parachute Provisions
  • “Good Reason” Resignation Packages
  • Change in Control Agreements
  • Consulting Arrangements
  • Deferred Compensation
  • Early Retirement Packages
  • Employment & Executive Buyout
  • Equity grants, Profits Interests & Other Stock Awards
  • Executive Compensation
  • Executive Employment Agreements
  • Executive Put or Call
  • Operating Agreements
  • Retention/Stay Bonus
  • Severance Negotiations
  • Shareholder Agreements
  • Stock/Equity Agreements
  • Non-Competition/Non-Solicitation Agreements
  • 280 G & 409 A Tax Provisions
Intellectual Property & Trade Secret Disputes
  • Defense of misappropriation of trade secrets or other confidential information
  • Non-Disclosure Agreements (NDA)
  • Confidentiality Agreements
Job Eliminations & Terminations
  • Eliminations
  • Layoffs
  • Mediation
  • Reductions in Force
  • Reorganizations & Restructuring
  • Separation Agreements
  • Termination With or Without Cause
  • U-5 Language
  • Waivers & Releases
  • Wrongful Termination

Preserving Reputations

Reputation Management

Collaborating with a team of criminal, education and employment lawyers, KJK’s Reputation Management attorneys work to preserve the reputation of clients who have been tried in the court of public opinion. We represent executives and other professionals who have been accused of workplace wrongdoing and misconduct, including sexual harassment, employment discrimination, workplace violence and financial improprieties.

Gap Board Diversity Lawsuit

Important to Know:

Severance Agreements Frequently Asked Questions

Under what circumstances would an employee get a severance package?
Companies often provide severance when an employee is laid off or part of a reorganization or a reduction in force (RIF). At times, when an employee is terminated without cause, the employer may also offer severance. If a company has a severance plan, that likely will spell out the circumstances where severance is provided. If the company does not have such a plan, then it is up to the company’s discretion whether to offer severance.
Is health insurance part of severance agreements?

Health insurance may be part of a severance package. Companies sometimes keep employees on the health insurance plan during the severance period. If COBRA applies (or a state COBRA equivalent), the employee may have an opportunity to sign up for continuation coverage.

What is normally contained in a severance package?

The company will require that the employee sign a release and waiver, providing that the employee will not file a lawsuit against the company for any employment-related claim that is based upon events occurring prior to the date of the release. The company may also require that the employee agree to keep the terms of the deal confidential, and to refrain from saying anything negative about the company. Depending on the circumstances, the company may also require the employee to agree not to compete against the company or solicit its employees or customers. In return, the company will pay severance either in a lump sum or over a period of time.

What happens to the employee’s deferred compensation and equity/stock in a severance agreement?

That generally depends on the terms of the plans that govern these subjects. The plans usually will spell out what happens when someone is terminated for Cause, or without Cause, as well as when stock becomes vested.

More Information:

Executive Employment Agreements FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

What is an employment agreement?
An employment agreement is a contract between an employer and an employee that covers the general terms of employment, including compensation, duration of the agreement and the employment relationship, benefits and equity.
Is severance provided for in employment agreements?
Employment agreements often provide for severance in the event that the employee is terminated “without Cause” or if the employee resigns for “Good Reason.”
What is a “Good Reason” separation?
Some executive employment agreements provide that the executive is also entitled to severance in the event that he or she resigns for a “Good Reason.” This usually means that the employer has materially reduced an executive’s responsibilities and/or compensation, or required the executive to move when that was not contemplated.
Will the employee be required to agree to a non-compete or no-solicitation clause as part of an employment agreement?
These are often included in executive employment agreements, and in agreements of other employees who have access to confidential information of the company or who have relationships with important customers/clients. The employment agreement often also provides that the employee may not disclose or divulge confidential information of the company.

employment & severance negotiations

attorneys

Rob Gilmore Cleveland Employment Attorney

Robert S. Gilmore

CHAIR

Samir Dahman

Samir B. Dahman

PARTNER

Alan Rauss

Alan M. Rauss

PARTNER

Kirsten Mooney

Kirsten B. Mooney

ASSOCIATE

Lyndsay Ross Cleveland Attorney

Lyndsay M. Ross

ASSOCIATE

Samir Dahman Columbus Corporate Lawyer

Samir B. Dahman

Partner In Charge Columbus

Rob Gilmore Cleveland Employment Attorney

Robert S. Gilmore

Partner

Kirsten Mooney

Kirsten B. Mooney

Associate

Alan Rauss

Alan M. Rauss

Partner

Lyndsay Ross Cleveland Attorney

Lyndsay M. Ross

Associate

Samir Dahman Columbus Corporate Lawyer

Samir B. Dahman

Partner In Charge Columbus

Rob Gilmore Cleveland Employment Attorney

Robert S. Gilmore

Partner

Kirsten Mooney

Kirsten B. Mooney

Associate

Alan Rauss

Alan M. Rauss

Partner

Lyndsay Ross Cleveland Attorney

Lyndsay M. Ross

Associate

Contact

CLEVELAND OFFICE

1375 East Ninth Street

One Cleveland Center, 29th Floor

Cleveland, OH 44114-1793

216-696-8700

 

 

COLUMBUS OFFICE

10 West Broad Street

One Columbus Center, Suite 1900

Columbus, OH 43215

614-427-5731

 

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