Variation of employment contract

If you want to make a change to an employee’s contract, you might want to use this type of clause. But bear in min not all contracts have them. A variation of employment contract may contain a provision expressly providing you with the power to amend the terms of a contract.

Contain clauses of this nature within the contract, should you seek to use it now. You may find yourself wanting (or needing) to make changes you know are likely to be unpopular and difficult to get staff to agree to. What is a change of employment contract?

Can an employer refuse to change a contract? Changes in the employment contract – variations: Generally , changes are made on the original contract of employment from time to time. There is always no issue when the changes relate to promotion or betterment of the contract.

Problems and disputes arise when such variations are to reduce employees’ benefits. Variation Of Employment Contracts. Following a period of employment, the Employer may wish to make changes to the Contract of Employment, for instance due to changes in the business it may make economic sense to change the hours of work or even pay.

During the life of a contract of employment, some of its terms and conditions may change. This can happen for various reasons including length of employment, changes in technology and pay increases. Any proposed change or variation to your contract should be negotiated (discussed ) with you.

Please contact the HR Support and Advice Unit should you wish to clarify any aspects of applying this template. Some contracts of employment contain a variation clause that can allow your employer to make changes to your contract. Employers should only use these clauses to vary a contract if they have a good reason, for example the business is struggling financially and needs to cut staff hours. Usually, the employer and employee both need to agree to any contract changes. But an employee can insist on a change if they have a legal right to it.

This article was written by Lee Crisp , an Associate Designate at Norton Rose Fulbright South Africa. Under the common law, employers are not entitled to unilaterally vary the terms of an employee’s employment contract. The guiding principles in contract variation are: To be effective, the change must be notified to the employee and he or she must consent to it. Consent may be inferred or express. If express, it must be in writing.

Where there is no agreement, employers often impose changes unilaterally. Examples of temporary variation to an employment contract include a variation to normal days or hours of work, stand down from work, taking accrued annual leave, performing different duties or working from a different location (e.g. home). This letter outlines the situation that has led to the need to vary the employee’s contract and states that discussions with representatives have not reached an agreement. The letter explains that despite this the proposed variation will be put in place and asks the employee to sign the letter to indicate acceptance of the contractual variation.

In simple terms, a contract variation occurs when the parties agree to do something differently from the way they originally agree whilst the remainder of the contract otherwise operates unchanged. Doyle CJ acknowledged that it was often difficult to tell whether a change in working arrangements had given rise to a new contract or a variation of an existing contract , but suggested that the nature of the change in duties was relevant and that “the more significant or substantial the change, the more likely a court is to conclude that. If terms and conditions are unilaterally varie the employee has an election to resile from the contract or to sue for damages in terms of the contract or to accept the variation. However, a unilateral alteration of an essential term in an employment contract can give rise to constructive dismissal, entitling the employee to sue the employer for damages.

This chapter provides an analysis of the law on the variation and suspension of contracts of employment.

The first part of the chapter, focusing on variation, notes the extent to which the relevant body of law is heavily influenced by contractual paradigms and concepts, and how these concepts are often adapted and shaped in an attempt to strike a balance between the employees’ interest in terms of security and stability, and the employers’ managerial prerogative and need for adaptability. Pack of five letters that allow an employer to give formal, effective notice of a change to a term in an employment contract. In general, unless there a provision within the contract , the contractual variation may not be done without the consent of the employee. If there is no provision (ie an express or implied term in the contract or collective agreement ), then the employer may be forced to serve notice of termination on the “old” contract of employment and. Pack of documents including five formal, effective letters, each varying a different term of the most common variations of a contract.

VARYING THE TERMS OF AN EMPLOYMENT CONTRACT Set out below are some of the main points employers should consider when looking to make changes to an employee’s terms of employment. When contemplating a variation, each case will need to be considered on its own facts. This information sheet does not constitute legal advice. The starting point for making any changes is to check what the employment agreement itself says about how it may be modified.

Normally, an agreement may contain a clause like this: This agreement may be varied by agreement in writing signed by both parties.