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mxs

Not joining after signing employment agreement

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Hi,

I am on H1b. I have signed an employment agreement with an employer and now considering not to join them. The primary reason is there are many layers in this assignment and I am skeptical on the immigration process. I know I should have thoroughly gone through the agreement, however, the fact is I have signed and need to live with it.

I want to understand the risk of not joining them after signing the employment agreement. Plz share your experience and inputs in similar cases.

The clause that worries me:

Damages for Breach of Term Provision. - Employee acknowledges the time, effort and resources that the Company has and will expend in developing and marketing Employee, and the damage that will result in the Company’s business in the event that Employee fails to join uponCompany filing for Employee’s H1B, appear at the outset of the Term or terminates thisAgreement prior to the end of the Term. Accordingly, in the event that Employee fails to join upon Company filing for Employee’s H1B, appear for employment at the outset of the Term, report to a Company designated assignment or project, or if Employee terminates Employee’s employment prior to the end of the Term, Employee shall be liable to Company for any and all damages and relief as allowed by law, including but not limited lost profits, revenues and consequential damages.

Attorneys’ Fees & Costs. - The Employee agrees that if the Employee is held by any court of competent jurisdiction to be in violation, breach or non-performance of any of the terms of this Agreement, then the Employee shall pay all costs of such action or suit, including reasonable attorneys’ fees, of the Company.

 

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I have run this by 3 contract attorneys, but they all gave conflicting advices. So, I would like to understand the experiences and advices of other members here. How many legal issues occur when we don't join after signing employment agreement.

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I think that most people would not even sign such a thing. There is so much wrong with this, every sentence is a big red warning flag.

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I have done this twice in last 5 years, In my experience :

Company A : Charged me fraction of Legal fees and I thought it would be lot but was surprised to know it was just $94, No idea what was it. And since it was that less didn't bother to go any legal route.

Company B : Didn't charge a dime.

 

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Thank you Centepede.

Thank you JoeF, I do understand that. However, the fact is I signed it assuming it's just another offer letter. Now, I feel being trapped. Advices here would be helpful. I am consult8ing lawyers anyway. The line that's worrying me the most is: Employee shall be liable to Company for any and all damages and relief as allowed by law, including but not limited lost profits, revenues and consequential damages.

Can anyone guide me as to what could be the possible damage we are expecting?

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It can be from a couple of hundered dollors to a few thousand. It all depends on how your employer wants to calculate it. There is no set amount. They can add anything to the list of damages and bump it up if they really want to go after you. You will not know the real number untill you get it from your employer. 

Just talk to the employer and if you not joining him, let him know and get it done asap rather than dragging it longer. 

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On 5/15/2020 at 8:26 AM, mxs said:

The line that's worrying me the most is: Employee shall be liable to Company for any and all damages and relief as allowed by law, including but not limited lost profits, revenues and consequential damages.

 

I have exact same line written in my offer letter. And, these are Fortune 100 companies. 

In my conversation, i was asked by my Lawyer friend (1) To your knowledge, has petitioner made any financial arrangements /commitments that you personally witnessed or signed on in good faith ? (2) To your knowledge, has petitioner informed you in written communication about any financial arrangements/ commitments that are contingent on your offer acceptance? (3) To your knowledge, has petitioner asked your authorized consent to such arrangements/commitments?

I answered "No" to all and i was told Not to worry about anything.

Edited by Centepede

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You have the right not to join any employment. If there are multiple layers it's something employer should worry and not you. You just tell them that you will not join and you don't have to pay a penny. All these clauses matters only after you join them and make any mess with their business. So.. No worries. you are all good. you are not modern slave 🙂 Period.

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7 hours ago, alien-us said:

You have the right not to join any employment. If there are multiple layers it's something employer should worry and not you. You just tell them that you will not join and you don't have to pay a penny. All these clauses matters only after you join them and make any mess with their business. So.. No worries. you are all good. you are not modern slave 🙂 Period.

All you said will only apply till you have not singed the offer letter. After you sign the offer letter, you have to stick to the agreement. 

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On 5/20/2020 at 3:43 PM, alien-us said:

You have the right not to join any employment. If there are multiple layers it's something employer should worry and not you. You just tell them that you will not join and you don't have to pay a penny. All these clauses matters only after you join them and make any mess with their business. So.. No worries. you are all good. you are not modern slave 🙂 Period.

Yup. Unless the person actually starts the job employment agreements don't matter. It has happened that people moved to a different state only to be told by the employer a day before the job was starting that the job is canceled. The prospective employer can do the same thing.

Once the person has started working and signed the employment contract things are different. Although employment is still at will, meaning both employer and employee can terminate the relationship at any time.

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