Creating effective employment contracts and service agreements that eliminate uncertainty and are legally compliant

  • An employment contract always exists between an employer and employee, even if it is not written down. However, an unwritten contract can cause uncertainty and be problematic.
  • It is essential your employment contracts and director’s service agreements contain all the necessary details and are specifically written for your business needs.
  • We can draft a bespoke contract or service agreement for a specific role, create a template for future use or update your current templates.
  • We can also carry out a contract review, to ensure all your current contracts are legally compliant, or facilitate a change of employment contract terms.

What is an employment contract?

An employment contract is a legal agreement between an employer and an employee that sets out the terms and conditions of employment. This can include details such as job description, salary, working hours, leave entitlements, and confidentiality obligations. An employment contract is a binding document that forms the basis of the employment relationship.

Why does my business need a contract of employment?

As an employer, it’s important to understand that there is always a contract between an employee and employer, even if there is nothing in writing. Unfortunately an unwritten contract can bring uncertainty to both parties, especially when a dispute arises.

What are the consequences if my business doesn’t have a contract of employment?

You should create a written employment contract which expressly sets out the terms agreed between you and the employee within two months of the commencement date. Failure to provide a written contract can lead to an employment claim as a verbal contract can lead to much uncertainty. It is much simpler and more cost-efficient for your business to do this at the beginning of an employment relationship, than face the expense and disruption of an employment tribunal claim due to uncertain terms, when the employment terminates.

Some of the terms an employment contract should include are:-

  • Pay (wages, overtime, bonuses and sick pay);
  • Hours (working hours, when and where, overtime);
  • Holiday (pay, entitlement, process); and
  • Termination (notice period, method, reasons).

How Moore Barlow can help

We can help you with drafting a specific contract, a template for future use or updating your current templates.

Our specialist employment team has a wealth of knowledge in drafting and reviewing employment contracts and director’s service agreements. Although you may find standard employment documents from websites or old documents you may have, we advise you seek our professional legal advice to ensure your contracts are up to date and fully legally compliant. We will take the time to discuss the terms of the contract with you and ensure it is tailored precisely to your business, creating an entirely bespoke document.

Once an employment contract or agreement has been correctly drafted, it is important that they are maintained and kept up to date with the changes in the law. We can provide a quote to perform a contract review, which will ensure your contracts are being properly maintained and remain legally compliant.

With our employment law experts based across our office in London, Southampton, Guildford, Richmond, Woking and Lymington, we’re ideally placed to offer specialist advice and support to your business on a local or national level.