An attorney has said online:
"Additionally, many employers think that having a contract worker sign a waiver or release form means they are protected if the worker decides to sue and claim they were an employee the entire duration of their employment. By law, workers cannot waive their right to bring claims for a wide range of employment discrimination and wage and hour violations. If a worker has been improperly classified as an independent contractor they can still bring many claims regardless of what they may have agreed to in a waiver”.
Do you agree or disagree with this statement?
(I ask this because an attorney that I've consulted with has said that I should hire him to write a release and has said that a release, along with a payment to the contract worker, should protect me from a labor hearing and holds up in most labor related matters. But please, just because one attorney has suggested that I hire him for this, don't let it color your judgement. I'd like to know your honest opinion. It sounds as though I would just be throwing my money away.)
There are some claims which are waivable and some which are not. Discrimination claims are waivable. Wage and hour claims are waivable.
What may not be waivable are misclassification issues. That is because, by misclassifying an employee as an independent contractor, there are liabilities you have to the government that cannot be waived by a private individual. So while the individual may not be able to sue you for those things, the government still can.
In sum: I disagree with the attorney who wrote that discrimination and wage and hour claims are not waivable. They are. But it may be worthwhile for you to hire someone knowledgeable in the field to write a settlement and release agreement that will protect you from what the law does allow you to be protected from.
I hope this information is helpful to you.
Craig T. Byrnes
Disclaimer: Please be aware that I am not offering legal advice, nor forming an attorney-client relationship with you. I am not representing you, nor doing anything to protect your legal rights. If you believe that you have suffered a legal wrong, take action before any statute or limitations expires, or your right to do so may be lost forever. Good luck in your legal matter.
I agree with the statement. These types of rights are usually non-waivable.
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