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What are the important components of an executive agreement?

An executive employment is important for both employers and employees. However, if you do not know the key elements that should be included, you could be doing yourself more harm than good when signing the dotted line.

Perhaps the most important issue is clarifying compensation, including any signing bonuses, annual bonuses or scheduled raises. This section might also include information regarding circumstances that could lead to a reduction in the employee's salary.

Executive agreements are enforced at the state level, which means that Georgia laws should be taken into account when reviewing your executive agreement. If the position in question spans several states, it is important to ascertain which state's laws will govern the contract.

When possible, it helps the employee to know what the causes for termination may be. As the Georgia Secretary of State points out, the state abides by an employment at-will policy, which means most employees can be terminated at any time and for any reason or for no reason. If someone is terminated for certain reasons, he or she may not be able to collect severance. Therefore, providing clarity in this area could reduce the risk of litigation down the road.

Some other key components you should look for include the following: 

  •        Details surrounding equity grants
  •        A clear job description
  •        Benefits, including health insurance, disability and retirement options
  •        Liability protection

Lastly, it is important to know if there are any limitations once the executive's contract has ended. This clause should be thorough, specifying which geographic regions are involved and for what time period.

While this information may be useful, it should not be taken as legal advice.

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