At their most simple, contracts are legally enforceable agreements between two parties. This essentially means that if any party to a contract violates its terms, another party to the contract affected by that violation may hold the other accountable in court. When employers hire individuals to work within their businesses, they generally require workers to sign legally enforceable employment contracts. When either an employer or employee breaches this kind of contract, legal action may follow. It is also possible that legal actions may result from a breach of an agreement that is only ever implied.
When employers breach an employment contract, the affected worker may need to seek the guidance of an attorney experienced in this area of law. In holding the employer accountable for the breach, an employee and his or her attorney may seek to recover various kinds of monetary damages, position reinstatement and/or other compensation. The process of holding an employer accountable for breach of contract can be tricky, but an experienced attorney can aid a wronged employee advocate for his or her rights under whatever circumstances surround the breach.
When an employee breaches an employment contract, an employer may similarly attempt to hold that worker accountable under the law. For example, if an employee violates a compete clause or sells business secrets to a competitor, an employer may attempt to recover monetary damages. Under certain circumstances, an employer may also alert authorities to potential criminal activity related to the worker’s breach. Just as workers may require the services of an experienced attorney, employers may benefit from consulting an attorney before taking breach-related action against an employee.
Source: Findlaw Free Enterprise, “Breach of Employment Contract: What Remedies May Be Possible?” Daniel Taylor, Feb. 9, 2015