Seasonal employment contracts are a useful tool when hiring people to work for a specific period of time. A variety of jobs fall under this type of contract, including any type of employment in which you are employed for a set period of time, usually around seasonal work. Good examples of this type of work include landscaping, construction, holiday retail, snow removal, lifeguarding, and similar types of employment.
Inclusions in Seasonal Employment Contracts
The types of information included in a seasonal contract should be much the same as that which is included in a standard employment contract. It will also include more in depth information on start and stop times for employment.
- Employment tasks should outline in full, this includes providing information on what the task is specifically and how it should be complete; a thorough explanation here will be helpful later.
- Payment amounts, including any overtime or bonus pay available or paid; the amount of payment should be set by term, for example, weekly payment or monthly payment for services, giving specific dates of pay when acceptable.
- The hours of work should be expressed, including if there are any overtime hours needed, when they are, and who should determine the need for overtime hours; determine if this meets your state's legal requirements for overtime work.
- Holiday pay, sick pay or other time off pay given to employees during the contracted period; often there is a limit to the number of days provided and some states require a specific number of days given as sick days paid to the employee.
- Employment start and end dates; with seasonal contracts, it is important that these dates be outlined as specific as possible, with exceptions. For example, if landscaping services need to extend into October when the season normally ends in September, an add on clause should be included.
- Termination requirements and abilities; employers may terminate employment for any reason, generally, but some contracts require a specific procedure to be put in place to convey this need.
- Layoff information is included; including how much warning is necessary if the employer must halt the employment or the employer cancels the project.
- If the employment contract will be time based, end dates must be included with days of work. If the employment contract will be on a per need basis, such as snow removal only on days when it snows, this should be included in the contract as well.
Contract Design Tips and Help
When designing seasonal employment contracts, it is essential to make them specific to your state's laws. The state's labor board can provide you with information here. Some unions and trade organizations offer employment contract help to their members, especially in industries like construction, electrical or plumbing. These agencies can help you to insure your contract holds up under laws and fits the needs of both the employer and employee.
With seasonal contracts, sometimes referred to as term contracts, it is essential to realize full contract rights are in effect from day one of the contract. There is no probationary period here since employment is set from one date to the next. The employer can include a specific clause allowing for dismissal after a short time frame, such as two weeks, to allow them to walk away from an unproductive employee.
Obtaining employment contracts is not difficult, in most areas. It is always best to work with an attorney or trade organization in the construction of these legal documents, to insure they are able to be upheld in a court of law. You can find free or paid for employment contracts online.
If you do elect to purchase contracts from online sources, insure they fit your state's requirements on hours, compensation and contract design. Most reputable websites allow you to select the contracts appropriate to your state.
Anytime you are not sure if a contract is appropriate for you, talk to your attorney. The laws regarding employment in your state still hold even if you have a contract. Help is available to those who feel they have received abuse in some way; talk to your Attorney General if you feel this is the case.