Q. Can I inadvertently create an employment agreement?
A. Yes. Employers can form employment agreements without intending to. This happens most often with promissory language in offer letters and employee handbooks. These and other documents should be carefully drafted and reviewed by legal counsel. Promissory language should be rewritten or removed and appropriate disclaimers added.
Employers sometimes do not realize that verbal agreements are just as enforceable as written ones. Employers should also avoid making promises to employees about future promotions, pay increases, bonuses, or other benefits. And recruiters should be wary of “overselling” the job to candidates.