Employment Contract – 5 mins

For your apprenticeship, your employment contract is the document that lays of the terms and conditions of your employment. It is essential to carefully read and understand your employment contract before signing it. Here’s a step-by-step guide to help you do that.

1. Take some time. Find a quiet space where you can focus on reading the document from start to finish without distractions.

2. Understand the basic terms. These terms will help you to understand your contract.

  • Start date / end date
  • Stat days / Vacation / Sick Leave
  • Probation:

3. Pay attention to duties and responsibilities. Review the section that outline your duties, responsibilities, and any specific obligations you need to fulfill. Ensure that you are comfortable with the tasks mentioned and can reasonably meet the expectations. If you don’t feel comfortable, discuss it with your host mentor farm.

4. Compensation and benefits. Review the sections that cover your wage, bonuses and any other benefits like room and board,  or vacation days.

5. Working hours and schedule: Understand the standard working hours. Note any provisions about overtime, breaks, and leave policies, including vacation, sick days, and maternity/paternity leave.

6. Termination and notice periods: Carefully read the sections related to contract termination. Understand the conditions under which your employment can be terminated and the notice period required from both parties. Be aware of any restrictive covenants that may affect your career after leaving the company.

8. Confidentiality: Sometimes a confidentiality section is included.  Pay attention if you are being asked to keep information confidential about the farm or business.

9. Dispute resolution: Look for clauses that outline how disputes will be resolved, such as arbitration or mediation. Understand your rights and options in case of any conflicts that may arise during your employment.

10. Seek clarifications: If you have questions or need clarification on any aspect of the contract, don’t hesitate to your host farm mentor or your coordinator. It’s important to have a clear understanding of what you’re agreeing to before signing the contract. 

11. Retain a copy. Once you have read and understood the employment contract, make sure to keep a copy signed by both parties for your records. This will serve as a point of reference in case of any future disputes or misunderstandings.

Remember, an employment contract is a legally binding document. If you are uncertain about any aspect of the contract, it’s crucial to seek professional advice to ensure you make an informed decision before signing.