There are several alternatives to going to court. The most common sense way is to either directly try to resolve it with the other party, or have the party’s attorneys discuss it with each other. Other means of resolution are mediation, that’s a very common method, and also, arbitration. Both are alternatives that have some favorable aspects, as opposed to going to court. Mediation involves voluntarily discussing the dispute with a neutral third party, and whatever they agree upon is mutually agreeable. Arbitration is the party’s hire a third party, another lawyer, and the lawyer will decide the case in sitting as a private judge. The parties will split the expense of this private judge deciding the case. …
An oral agreement is usually binding but not always. Florida has a statute of frauds so certain types of contracts are not binding unless they’re in writing and signed by the party against whom it’s charged. For example, selling a house or a piece of real property requires a written agreement. It has to be signed by the other party. Commercial leases exceeding a year’s length will need to be in writing. There’s a witness requirement of 2 witnesses to the execution of the lease. Many other contracts can be enforced simply because they’re oral contracts where one part has agreed and as somebody has often said, its simply a handshake where they’ve mutually agreed orally as to what the contract is.
A protected characteristic would include things such as the age of the person or their gender or their race or their ethnicity. Those are factors that the low considers to be typically irrelevant to whether a person is really doing a good job. Most employers aren’t going to be interested in what the person’s race is or their ethnicity is, they’re going to be interested typically in whether they’re doing a good job. That’s where the law forbids employers from taking into consideration certain protected characteristics such as those I’ve described.
The Temporary employees can file discrimination claims, but only certain types of discrimination claims. Some claims require a certain period of employment for the employee to bring the claim. In other words, they had to be with the employer for a certain period of time to be able to have rights under that. An example would be under the Family Medical Leave Act where it would require a certain hours of employment and certain duration of employment to be able to have rights under that particular statute. Many employees can bring discrimination claims simply as temporary employees. There is no time period that they had to be employed by the employer, particularly if there is discrimination based on for example race or age or ethnicity.
Typically no employee is entitled to severance pay unless there is a contractual obligation during the employment relationship where the employer and the employee had agreed that earlier in the relationship that when the relationship ends the employee is entitled to a certain amount of severance.
Non-compete agreements are not always enforceable. Florida typically requires that all competition be allowed, and there shall be no restriction of competition, but there’s a separate statute in Florida, which is 542.335 Florida statutes that governs non-compete agreements. That statute requires that there be certain legitimate business interests of the employer set out in the statute such as for example, the protection of trade secrets or the protection of confidential information. The employer has to plead and prove these to be able to force a non-compete covenant.
Not all employers are covered by the Fair Labor Standards Act. There are 2 basic types of coverage under the Fair Labor Standards Act. One type, the typical type is enterprise coverage meaning that the employer has to have at least $500,000 in revenues, and it has to have at least 2 employees. There are other types of coverage, which are called traditional coverage where there’s certain businesses that are going to otherwise be covered in the Fair Labor Standards Act regardless of the revenues and the number of employees.
There are many exceptions to employment at will, and these are what are called discrimination laws. When an employee is being discriminated against based on race, on age, ethnicity, whistle-blower status, worker’s compensation status, these are exceptions to the at will rule that have been created by the courts as well as by the legislatures. These allow the employees to enjoy protections where the employer cannot simply saying, “You’re an at-will employee because I’m terminating you.” The laws say you’re not allowed to fire somebody for these particular reasons, and if you do you’re subject to damages for those claims.