Continuing with some components to consider for an employment contract:
Intellectual Property Rights
Many workplaces are fertile ground for a lot of ideation due to, among other factors, how much problem-solving occurs at work.
The work setting can be ripe for the development of inventive products and/or processes that either provide a new way of doing something, or a new technical solution to a problem etc.
T&T patent legislation provides that – in the absence of any provisions to the contrary in any contract of employment or for the execution of work, the right to a patent for an invention made in the performance of such contract of employment or in the execution of such work is deemed to accrue to the employer, or the person who commissioned the work. Additionally certain rights that are conferred on the inventor, via the statute, shall not be restricted by contract.
However, when an invention is made by an employee (whose employment contract does not require them to engage in inventive activity), or in a field of activity different to that of his employer and without using information or means put at his disposal by the employer, the right to the patent for such invention accrues to the employee.
These are just a few factors, so do consider the intellectual property clause comprehensively so that it properly addresses any intellectual property issues, that may arise.
Notice must be given according to the express terms of the contract or according to statute in certain retrenchment circumstances.
For the purposes of the contract, state the length of notice due to and from the employee. This may generally be a month but it can vary depending on the nature of the employment contract/type of worker/ the employee’s pay period and the employee’s seniority. It will also vary in different jurisdictions based on their laws and regulations.
Termination of contract & termination benefits
The employment contract may be terminated either by the employer or the employee and payment of termination benefits may be applicable. The Employer must have proper grounds for termination. There may be different reasons for dismissal but it may be useful to state the grounds for summary dismissal that will govern the relationship.
This clause should state whether there will be a right to terminate by payment in lieu of notice.
If the employee will be given company property during their employment (e.g. mobile, car, laptop, pass, keys etc.) state what needs to be returned, upon termination, and to whom. Also state whether the employee is required to reimburse the employer for any training (or other) costs upon termination.
If there is a fixed retirement age that is operational in the organisation state this age.
Circumstances will dictate what governs the payment of termination benefits. If the employee is entitled to payment of termination benefits this is governed by the employment contract. Entitlement to payment of severance, for retrenchment, is governed by our retrenchment legislation.
Parts 1 to 3 of this Employment Contract Blog contains general guidance (on this subject) which does not constitute legal advice. Should you require specific legal assistance and advice please contact an Attorney-at-Law.