It's Easier to Move On With a Severance Package

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We'll help you get a package that's fair

If you’re facing a layoff or termination, a severance will help bridge the gap between jobs. But these agreements are written with the employer’s best interests in mind — not yours.

Jackson Spencer attorneys will help determine whether your agreement is fair, aggressively negotiate for a more favorable severance, or — if you were offered no severance — help you secure a package that works for you.

You Need A Plan of Action:

Severance Agreement Review

A word-for-word explanation of the agreement to ensure you understand the terms and implications. We will suggest revisions to the agreement you were given to insure that you (a) receive the best package possible and (b) are not saddled with onerous requirements that could make it\t difficult to get a new job.

Circumstances Review

A review of the circumstances of your employment and termination. We can often find ways for you to potentially obtain more severance or a better package.

Individualized Plan

An individualized plan reflecting your particular circumstances, leverage, and negotiation needs – including advice on how to potentially obtain more money.

Employer Negotiation

We will negotiate directly with your employer to enhance the severance package.

A severance package contains the pay and benefits you are offered upon separation from the company. It may include compensation for unused vacation/sick leave, bonuses, or years of service. It may also address the continuation of insurance coverage, stock options, disability benefits, and outplacement services to help you find a new job.

In exchange for receiving a severance package, most employers require you to sign a “severance agreement,” which often includes a release of any claims you may have against the company, a non-compete clause, and terms prohibiting you from saying something negative about your employer.

Understanding the Terms of a Severance Package

  1. Take your time before your sign. Review the package in detail, analyze the offer, and negotiate or retain a lawyer to assist you. If you are over 40, employers are required to allow you a minimum of 21 days to consider the offer. You need to fully understand the agreement, weigh your options, and decide whether to negotiate for better terms.
  2. Gather information. Locate relevant documentation (your original offer letter; employee handbook;, information on the company severance plan; emails concerning issues that may be grounds to claim wrongful termination or unfair treatment; documentation of your health and disability insurance, retiree medical benefits, vacation time, compensation, and stock options; non-compete, intellectual property inventions, non-disclosure, and mandatory arbitration agreements). This will help determine exactly what has been offered to you, what has been left out, and whether you can improve your severance through negotiation.
  3. Consider leverage. If you were terminated because you belong to a protected class, due to an illness or disability, as a matter of retaliation, or in violation of a written or implied contract, you may have grounds to claim wrongful termination or to negotiate a better severance package. If you sign a severance agreement without negotiation, you likely will be giving away these rights forever.
  4. Decide whether to negotiate. Most of the time, severance agreements are negotiable, but in some situations, an employer may be able to revoke an offer of severance if you reject the offer. You will never know whether your employer will negotiate unless you ask.
  5. Decide what to negotiate. The most common terms to negotiate include total compensation (cash, bonuses, stock options, unused vacation time, etc.), insurance coverage, disability benefits, letters of recommendation or a favorable statement regarding your “voluntary separation,” outplacement assistance, your ability to exercise stock options, and terms of or release from any non-compete.
  6. Consider hiring a lawyer. Often an experienced lawyer can help you understand the strengths and weaknesses of your situation. Further, a lawyer may be able to negotiate a better deal for you as many employers are more willing to negotiate once you get a lawyer involved.

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Our Attorneys

Fighting for Employees in Texas

Experienced. Knowledgable. Caring.

The attorneys at Jackson Spencer Law are here for you.  We know the law — and we know the rights and protections that employers owe to their workers. Whether it’s negotiating a severance package or a settlement with an employer, navigating the complexities of a whistleblower case, or taking a discrimination lawsuit to court — let our Texas legal team go to work for you.

Attorney Jennifer Spencer on phone

Jennifer Spencer


An experienced trial lawyer and known for an aggressive, organized, and highly effective litigation style. A champion for the rights of those who have been wrongfully terminated, discriminated against, sexually harassed, terminated after whistleblowing, passed over for promotions or otherwise wrongfully treated in the workplace.

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    Neal Bridges


    Counsels and represents client with employment and severance issues, including reviewing and advising clients on the terms of a severance agreement, negotiating on an employee’s behalf to increase the amount of a severance package, to representing clients in litigation over wrongful termination, workplace discrimination or retaliation, and more.

    James Hunnicut

    James Hunnicut


    Counsels and represents clients in a variety of business, employment, and complex commercial litigation matters in state and federal courts.

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