California workers have options in employment contract dispute

In most states, the construction industry is usually in full swing as long as the ever-changing seasons are favorable to outdoor work. As many California workers know, their chosen profession is not without its issues, including the troubling possibility of an employment contract dispute. There are options available that may assist one in overcoming these often seemingly insurmountable obstacles.

Most construction contracts have straightforward language when it spells out the expectations for both the business owner and the construction company. In the majority of cases, the contract is fulfilled with only minor hiccups. Unfortunately, there are times when both sides find themselves at an impasse with no clear way forward. In these circumstances, there are usually three avenues that can be considered in order to resolve the issues.

According to many professionals, of the three, mediation is not only the first move that a contract requires, it is often considered the preferred route. Mediation is comprised of an impartial third-party who reviews the merits of the dispute and, after careful consideration, determines the most appropriate resolution to the problem. This option is considered non-binding, and either party may choose to pursue one of the two other avenues: arbitration or litigation. Most contracts stipulate that only one of these may be selected.

As most California construction workers are aware, the majority of contracts are carefully worded documents that seek to avoid the potential for issues to develop into full-blown disputes that require the assistance of a third party. It may be prudent to remember, though, that any employee who finds him- or herself in the midst of a contentious employment contract dispute has resources available to find the best resolution to his or her particular situation. An attorney familiar with employment law could provide helpful information in these circumstances.

Source:, "The Dotted Line: Navigating construction disputes, from mediation to litigation", Kim Slowey, Dec. 6, 2016

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