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Ray, Employment lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 36398
Experience:  30 years in Employment law
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If I sold my business to an employee and I signed a written

Customer Question

If I sold my business to an employee and I signed a written contract with a $5000 sign on fee for 2 years, can I break that contract if my business is suffering due to hostile environment?
Submitted: 5 months ago.
Category: Employment Law
Expert:  Ray replied 5 months ago.
Hi and welcome to JA. Ray here to help you tonight. You would need to look to the contract to see if there are any outs for you as a seller. If you sold it to the employee then he owns it.Unless he defaults or there are outs in the contact itself you would be in breach of contract. You would need t o look and see if he is in breach of the terms.If he is then you would have right to terminate the contract.If he missed payments or other terms here then he would be in breach and you can terminate the contract here under Kentucky law. Any employees here under hostile environment can file with EEOC and claim discrimination and seek to have it investigated. They file here They could also sue the new owner for such discrimination.
Expert:  Ray replied 5 months ago.
The EEOC defines harassment as:unwelcome conduct that is based on race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy), national origin, age (40 or older), disability or genetic information. Harassment becomes unlawful where 1) enduring the offensive conduct becomes a condition of continued employment, or 2) the conduct is severe or pervasive enough to create a work environment that a reasonable person would consider intimidating, hostile, or abusive.
Expert:  Ray replied 5 months ago.
To establish a claim of hostile environment harassment, a complainant (employee) must prove all of the following elements:They belong to a statutorily protected class:They were subjected to harassment in the form of unwelcome verbal or physical conduct involving the protected class;The harassment complained of was based on her statutorily protected class;The harassment affected a term or condition of employment and or had the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with the work environment and or creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive work environment; andThere is a basis for imputing liability (it is fair to find the employer liable, they were on notice of the conduct and did nothing, etc.This might violate the terms of your sales contract if they are operating business in an illegal and discriminatory manner.It may breach terms of contract and allow you to cancel it.You may want local lawyer to review the contract and claim they breached it here by their actions. Thanks again.
Customer: replied 5 months ago.
This has been a little helpful. I don't think they ever actually gave me a copy of the contract. It was very basic, stating if I quit before 2 years I pay back the sign on bonus. I'd like to send you a screen shot of what I classify hostile environment. I passed the text on to the employers and nothing was done. They blamed me, said I walk around with a chip on my shoulder!
Expert:  Ray replied 5 months ago.
Be happy to look at it for you if you post it here.