How To Use
This termination letter should be presented to Employee after the Final Release form is signed and one copy given to the Accounting office.
The Final Release is the more important of the two documents and should be handled first.
This second document relates to the terms of separation, including but not limited to keys, corporate property, and the like. It is our business experience that you should stand firm on the grounds that no signature means no severance. This is your best chance to get the documents in place prior to a lawyer or government official being brought in. After gaining these signatures, no company of mine, at least to my knowledge, was ever sued, much less had to pay any additional monies in any settlement.
- Severance amount should be fixed prior to the meeting. Do not waver on the subject or you will wind up unraveling the entire agreement. Regular employee terminations are much trickier because the Employee generally feels let down and the Employer is generally angry about poor performance. In other words, the conversation is ripe for conflict and, as a rule, the Employee does not suspect the anger on the part of the Employer since most terminations relate to an Employee who “could” do the work, but wouldn’t, despite conversations in that regard, and tried to “get away with it” and keep employed.
- Be sure to get all keys to the property and limit the terminated employee’s access to their office. Suggest they are better off leaving for personal reasons. You can box up their goods at a later time. If you anticipate any problems, get someone to box up the goods while having this meeting.
- Remember it is your right to conduct them off the premises for any reason of your choosing as long as you do not disclose it. Do not discuss the whys and wherefores of termination. You can terminate people at will, as a rule. However, you may not terminate them for a host of specific reasons, and that list expands on an ongoing basis. The less said, the better.
- If the terminated employee wants your input about their performance, reference or the like, tell them to take care of today and call you tomorrow about it when they have a chance to reflect upon what they want. This both gets them off the premises and keeps you out of trouble. It also makes for a much more measured employee response so you can assist them, to the extent you are able, to help them get another job promptly. This is especially true for a longer-term employee.
- For newer employers, let me add that I have never terminated an employee with any medium or long term regrets afterwards. Most successfully find new employment and many actually learn from their termination. This is good for them, of course. But, it is of little consolation to the Employer who has invested in the Employee without a reasonable return.