Employment contracts have come to dictate many of the most critical elements of our work—what rights we have, how we enforce those rights, what job we can take after leaving our former position—but, too often, we don’t know whether we have an employment contract and, if so, what it says.
This creates a real knowledge gap between employers who have written the contract, and employees who may not even know they’ve signed one. Many employees “agree” to their employment contract by clicking a box on a touchscreen during their onboarding process or signing one of many forms in a pile of paperwork on their first day of work.
And there is little or no room to negotiate since employers often make signing the contract a condition of taking the job.
The Contract Fairness Project aims to shed light on employer-employee agreements to help us better understand what’s in our contracts and how that may impact things like our ability to go to court or to leave our current job for a better job.
The Contract Fairness Project is an effort to gather employment agreements for the purposes of study, research, and raising awareness about their impact on the terms and conditions of work, employment rights enforcement, and wages. By gathering, sharing, and studying employment contracts, the Project will bring these agreements out of the shadows and allow employees to make more informed choices. By enabling scholars and policymakers to study how these contract provisions work together, we can formulate effective policy solutions.
You can contribute to the growing repository by uploading a contract:Submit Contract
The Contract Fairness Project is led by two longtime labor and employment lawyers with extensive experience enforcing workplace laws from state attorney general offices, Jane Flanagan and Terri Gerstein.
They were driven to found this project after seeing a big increase in employees being required to sign employment contracts as a condition of getting a job, especially in industries like fast food, temp staffing, the gig economy, childcare, and home care, where they had not been used before.