Friday, October 24, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

Watch out what you sign at work

Doing your job and doing it well is the best way to stay out of trouble at work, advises Patricia Barasch, a Moorestown attorney who heads the National Employment Lawyers Association, a group of lawyers specializing in representing individuals in workplace cases. Here's the next tip: Watch what you sign.

Watch out what you sign at work

Patricia Barasch
Patricia Barasch

Doing your job and doing it well is the best way to stay out of trouble at work, advises Patricia Barasch, a Moorestown attorney who heads the National Employment Lawyers Association, a group of lawyers specializing in representing individuals in workplace cases. Here's the next tip: Watch what you sign

When you get a job, be careful about the paperwork you sign, especially in the honeymoon glow of initial employment. Barasch said her organization has seen a national trend toward companies requiring employees to sign documents that give various rights.

There are two common documents that can pose problems later:

1. Your employer may ask you to sign away rights to a jury trial in favor of binding arbitration if there are disputes or other workplace problems.

2. Your employer may ask you to sign a non-compete clause. These clauses are fairly common, but the best ones, from the employee point of view, put the least restrictions on future work. These non-compete documents can be binding with consequences that can last for years, so it may be worth it to consult a lawyer before you sign.

Watch out for "any agreement that has post-employment restrictions," Barasch said. You can read my profile of Barasch by clicking here. Her law firm is Schall & Barasch LLC

Check back here tomorrow for more advice from Barasch.

Jane M. Von Bergen Inquirer Staff Writer
About this blog

Jobbing covers the workplace – employment, unemployment, management, unions, legal issues, labor economics, benefits, work-life balance, workforce development, trends and profiles.

Jane M. Von Bergen writes about workplace issues for the Inquirer.

Married to a photographer she met at her college newspaper, Von Bergen has been a reporter since fourth grade, covering education, government, retailing, courts, marketing and business. “I love the specific detail that tells the story,” she says.

Reach Jane M. at jvonbergen@phillynews.com.

Jane M. Von Bergen Inquirer Staff Writer
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