Stress doesn’t invalidate employee signature on waiver

Terminated employees often receive a severance payment in exchange for waiving the right to sue. Employees considering such an offer may feel stressed out, considering they are about to be fired. Their stress won’t invalidate an otherwise fair waiver.

Recent case: When Candace, a social worker over the age of 40, learned her contract with a charter school would not be renewed, she was offered a severance agreement that granted four weeks extra pay in exchange for releasing any employment claims. In accordance with the Older Worker Benefit Protection Act, Candace was encouraged to consult an attorney and had 21 days to consider the offer. She signed, but sued anyway, alleging she had been under stress at the time.

The court tossed out her claim. Candace’s stress didn’t invalidate the waiver. (Warren v. Mastery Charter, ED PA, 2018)