Free Employment Contract Generator

Use the form below to generate a free employment contract that your company can use to hire employees.

Create your Free Employment Contract

Fill in the form below to have a free customised Employment Contract emailed to you in Word format. No credit card, sign-up or subscription needed.

Enter the full legal name of the company employing the individual.

Enter the full legal name of the individual being employed.

Enter the registration number as recorded in Companies House.

Enter the full postal address of the employer’s registered office.

Enter the full postal address of the employee.

Enter the official job title that will be assigned to the employee.

Select the date when the employee will officially start working.

Enter the primary address where the employee will be working. Where fully remote, state fully remote. The contract provides that where part-time remote working is permitted, the employer will communicate this to the worker separately.

Enter the gross pay amount before taxes and other deductions. You will specify the period via the next question. The £ sign is automatically included, but specify any commas or decimal points needed. E.g. 15.49 or 35,000.

£

Indicate the pay period (e.g. per hour, day, week, month or year). E.g. £20 per hour, or £45,000 per year.

Specify how the employee is paid by completing the below. Suggested text is given.

“The Employer shall pay the Employee…”

Is the employee eligible for a bonus?

An example clause that you can amend is included below.

Specify the duration of the probation period during which employment terms can be reassessed or the employee can be more easily fired. The contract provides that if the employee has been employed for less than one month they can be dismissed immediately, and if longer than one month they get one week's notice. Include the number and the period.

After the probation period has been passed, enter the length of notice required for either the employer or employee to terminate employment.

Specify the number of working days the employee is entitled to take as holiday each year, excluding public holidays. The clause contains language to deal with pro-rating this amount for part-time employees so if the standard for full time employees is 25 days, you can write 25 days here for part-time employees too. For full time workers, the legal minimum is 20.

days

Enter the special terms you wish to include below. These are added as a schedule to the document and override the terms of the main agreement. You'll likely need to generate a test version of the document first to work out what special terms you want to apply.

Examples could include non-compete provisions (example text provided below), details of any overtime the Employee could earn, and any specific additional benefits that you want to add to the contract (e.g. a company car).

Enter the email address you want us to send your contract to. This may take a couple of minutes to arrive.

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Guide to Employment Contracts

In the complex landscape of employment law within England and Wales, creating a solid and legally compliant contract of employment is paramount for any business. These documents not only set the expectations and responsibilities for both employers and employees but also provide a vital foundation for a healthy working relationship. With the advent of free employment contract generators, businesses now have access to tools that can streamline this essential process. However, understanding the nuances of these contracts and the legal requirements surrounding them is critical for their effective use. This article aims to provide businesses with comprehensive insights into the key aspects of employment contracts, from their formation to termination, including understanding various clauses and avoiding common pitfalls.

What is a Contract of Employment

A contract of employment is a legally binding agreement between an employer and an employee. It outlines the terms and conditions of employment, including job responsibilities, working hours, salary, and benefits. This document serves as a cornerstone of the employment relationship, ensuring clarity and mutual understanding. In England and Wales, the contract can be verbal or written, but employers are legally required to provide employees with a written statement of the main terms within two months of the start of employment.

While verbal contracts are legally binding, the lack of tangible evidence can lead to disputes and misunderstandings. Therefore, it is highly advisable for businesses to issue written contracts to all employees. These documents should clearly articulate all key aspects of the employment terms, reducing the likelihood of future conflicts.

Free employment contract generators have emerged as a valuable tool for creating these important documents. They offer templates that can be customized to fit the specific needs of a business and its employees. However, it’s vital to ensure that any generated contract complies with current laws and regulations.

Employment contracts are not static and may need to be updated or amended in line with changes in employment law, business operations, or the circumstances of the employee. Regular reviews and updates will help maintain their validity and relevance.

When Must An Employee be Given an Employment Contract

In England and Wales, an employee must be given the terms of their employment, also known as a ‘written statement of employment particulars,’ within two months of their start date. This requirement is part of the Employment Rights Act 1996, which aims to ensure that employees are fully informed of the conditions of their employment from the outset.

This written statement must include key information such as the names of the employer and employee, job description, place of work, hours of work, and details of pay. While this does not constitute the entirety of the employment contract, it covers its fundamental aspects.

For businesses, timely provision of these details is not just a legal obligation but also an opportunity to set clear expectations and foster a positive working relationship. Failure to comply can result in legal disputes and potential penalties.

With the aid of free employment contract generators, businesses can more easily meet this obligation. These tools can help ensure that all necessary information is included and that the contract is compliant with current employment laws.

What is a Probation Period

A probation period is a set duration at the beginning of an employee’s tenure during which their performance and suitability for the position are assessed. Typically ranging from three to six months, this period allows both the employer and the employee to evaluate if the employment relationship meets their respective expectations.

During the probation period, employers often apply different terms of notice for termination than those applied after the period has concluded. This flexibility benefits both parties, allowing for a less cumbersome separation process if the employment does not work out.

It’s crucial for the terms of the probation period to be clearly defined in the employment contract, including its length, any conditions attached, and the implications for termination of employment. This clarity helps manage expectations and reduces the risk of legal disputes.

Free employment contract generators can assist in drafting appropriate clauses for probation periods, ensuring they comply with legal standards and reflect the intentions of the employer accurately.

How to Terminate a Contract of Employment

Terminating an employment contract in England and Wales must be done in accordance with the terms of the contract and the law. Employers are required to provide employees with notice of termination, the length of which should be stipulated in the employment contract or be in line with the statutory minimum.

The reasons for termination must be fair and justifiable, such as redundancy, misconduct, or incapacity. Employers must follow a fair procedure, including conducting a thorough investigation and giving the employee an opportunity to respond to any allegations.

It’s essential for the employment contract to clearly outline the procedures for termination, including notice periods and grounds for dismissal. This can prevent misunderstandings and protect both parties in the event of a dispute.

Using a free employment contract generator can help ensure that termination clauses are correctly drafted and compliant with employment law, thereby reducing the risk of wrongful dismissal claims.

What is PILON (Payment In Lieu of Notice) Clause

A Payment In Lieu of Notice (PILON) clause is a provision in an employment contract that allows the employer to terminate the contract without notice, by providing a payment equivalent to what the employee would have earned during the notice period. This clause offers flexibility to the employer, enabling them to immediately end the employment relationship.

Including a PILON clause in an employment contract can be beneficial for both parties. For employers, it provides a straightforward way to manage separations without the need for a prolonged notice period. For employees, it ensures they receive compensation for the notice period, even if they are not required to work it.

However, it’s critical that the PILON clause is clearly defined in the contract to avoid any ambiguity regarding its application and the calculation of the payment. Misunderstandings can lead to disputes and potential legal challenges.

Employment contract generators can aid in the accurate drafting of PILON clauses, ensuring they are in line with legal requirements and clearly understood by both parties.

What is Gardening Leave

Gardening leave is a term used to describe a situation where an employee is required to serve out their notice period away from the workplace, usually at home, while still being employed and receiving their salary. This practice is often used to protect the company’s interests by restricting the employee’s access to sensitive information, clients, or colleagues during their notice period.

Gardening leave clauses in employment contracts allow employers to mitigate the risk of potential damage that could be caused by employees who are leaving, especially in industries where competition and confidentiality are key concerns.

While on gardening leave, employees are typically not allowed to work for another employer, start their own business in the same industry, or engage in any other activities that could conflict with their current employer’s interests.

Incorporating a gardening leave clause into an employment contract requires careful drafting to ensure it is enforceable and does not infringe on the employee’s rights. Free employment contract generators can provide a starting point for these clauses, but it is advisable to seek legal advice to tailor them to specific business needs.

Avoiding Common Pitfalls in Employment Contracts

One of the most common pitfalls in drafting employment contracts is the inclusion of vague or ambiguous terms, which can lead to disputes and misunderstandings. It’s essential for terms to be clear, precise, and easily understandable to both parties.

Another pitfall is failing to update contracts in response to changes in employment law, which can render some clauses outdated or non-compliant. Regular reviews and updates are crucial to ensure that contracts remain valid and enforceable.

Overlooking the need for flexibility in employment contracts can also be problematic. While it’s important for terms to be clearly defined, contracts should also allow for adjustments in job roles, responsibilities, and working conditions as the business evolves.

Using free employment contract generators can help avoid some of these pitfalls by providing template clauses that have been drafted to comply with current laws. However, customization and regular review by a legal professional are recommended to address specific business needs and changes in legislation.

What is a Non-Compete Clause

A non-compete clause is a provision in an employment contract that restricts an employee’s ability to work for competitors, start a competing business, or engage in similar activities that could harm the former employer’s business, for a certain period after leaving the company.

These clauses are intended to protect the employer’s business interests, such as confidential information, trade secrets, and customer relationships. However, for a non-compete clause to be enforceable, it must be reasonable in scope, duration, and geographical area.

The enforceability of non-compete clauses varies widely and is subject to judicial scrutiny. Courts will consider whether the restrictions are necessary to protect legitimate business interests and whether they impose unreasonable constraints on the employee’s ability to find new employment.

When drafting a non-compete clause, using a free employment contract generator can offer a starting point, but legal advice is crucial to tailor the clause to specific circumstances and to ensure it meets legal standards for enforceability.

How to Assess the Validity of a Non-Compete Clause

Assessing the validity of a non-compete clause involves examining whether it is reasonable and necessary to protect the employer’s legitimate business interests. Factors to consider include the duration of the restriction, the geographical area it covers, and the scope of activities it prohibits.

The clause must strike a balance between protecting the business and not unduly restricting the employee’s right to work. Clauses that are too broad in scope or duration, or cover an unreasonably large geographical area, are likely to be deemed unenforceable by courts.

Employers should also consider the employee’s role and access to sensitive information when drafting a non-compete clause. Higher-level employees with significant exposure to confidential information may justify more stringent restrictions compared to those in lower-level positions.

Seeking legal advice is essential when assessing the validity of a non-compete clause. A legal professional can provide guidance on current legal standards and help ensure that the clause is reasonable, necessary, and likely to be enforceable.

Navigating the complexities of employment contracts in England and Wales requires a careful balance between protecting business interests and ensuring compliance with employment law. While free employment contract generators offer a valuable starting point for creating these critical documents, understanding the intricacies of various clauses and legal requirements is crucial. Businesses must approach the drafting, review, and amendment of employment contracts with diligence and, where necessary, seek legal advice to ensure their contracts are fair, clear, and enforceable. By doing so, employers can foster positive employment relationships, minimize legal risks, and support the long-term success of their business.

Get Legal Advice

Contact us for a no-obligations quote for legal advice in relation to any of hiring, managing, dismissing or just generally dealing with employment. We can also help set up employee share option schemes.

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