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Are there caps on damages in settlement agreements?
I am a small business owner who is in the process of settling a dispute with a former employee. The employee is claiming a certain amount of damages, which I believe is excessive. I am interested in finding out if there are any caps on damages that can be included in a settlement agreement, as I would like to come to an agreement that is fair and reasonable for both parties.
Answered Mar 3, 2021
In Washington, there are no punitive damages. Employment resolutions are usually based on some percentage or multiple of a person's salary. It is your job to reach a settlement that is fair and reasonable for you, not for a litigant against you (that's their job, not yours). If you are having difficulty resolving this dispute, you may want to consider mediation. Before you pay the employee, be sure to have them sign a full and complete release of all current and future liability and claims against you individually, your business, your heirs; etc. Also, if you have business insurance, it's possible you are entitled to a free attorney to represent you in this dispute.
I recently entered into a settlement agreement with another party, and I am concerned that some of the language in the agreement may be ambiguous. I am worried that this ambiguity could lead to future misunderstandings or disputes, and I would like to know if there are any legal implications associated with ambiguous terms in a settlement agreement.
Answered Mar 3, 2021
In any and all agreements, not just settlement, make sure all ambigious terms are defined. Do not sign something you truly do not understand. Please consult a lawyer to review the settlement agreement for further analysis and legal implications.