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Executive Contracts

Advising Employers on Executive Contracts

The stakes are high when drafting or negotiating an executive employment agreement. Any mistakes you make at the beginning of the employment relationship can be costly to undo later.

The law firm of Key Harrington Barnes PC advises employers in drafting and negotiating these agreements. Based in Dallas, Texas, our attorneys are experienced trial lawyers with considerable experience litigating all types of employment disputes. However, we would rather help you find ways to prevent conflicts by drafting clear and enforceable agreements.

Avoiding Common Pitfalls

One of the most common shortcomings in many executive agreements is failure to provide a clear standard for cause for termination. The time to come up with a clear standard is before you have a dispute.

As an employer, you need a standard that is specific enough so you can act on it without fear of litigation. Most executive employment agreements fall short in this respect, using vague or general language that can be difficult to nail down, such as moral turpitude or committing a crime. An example of a clear standard would be one that allows termination before the term of the contract by majority vote of the board of directors.

In the wake of Enron, employers need guidance about executive pay. For example, under Section 409A of the IRS tax code, your company can face significant tax and securities consequences if your company does not meet the IRS requirements for deferred compensation.

Our attorneys are prepared to advise you on all issues involved in an executive employment contract, including severance pay and restrictive covenants such as trade secret protection. We can also help you prepare a negotiation strategy.

For Help Drafting or Negotiating an Executive Employment Contract

For more information about executive employment agreements, call our attorneys at (214) 615-7925 or send us an email using our contact form.

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