Legislation Update: Acceptance of amended contract of employment

Acceptance of amended contract of employment

To what extent is a new but unsigned contract of employment binding on the employee following termination of employment? In a recent High Court decision an employee is bound post-termination of employment by restrictive covenants in an unsigned new version of a contract of employment. In this case an employee had signed and returned a previous contract early in his employment, but not a later contract sent to him following a promotion some years later. The later contract included post-termination restrictive covenants and also a number of elective employee benefits.

It was found that as the employee had applied for one of these benefits (private medical insurance) after reading the later contract, and without any protest or reservation, it was in fact an unequivocal act in and it was determined that he had accepted all of the terms of the later contract, including the restrictive covenants (other aspects apply).

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