Negotiating severance and making employment termination

Negotiating severance and making employment termination a lucrative farewell is what Robert Adelson does best. In June 2012, Attorney Adelson represented the COO of a Texas software company, whom we will call Bill Harper (keeping the client’s real name and company confidential) and worked with Mr. Harper to negotiate his employment contract. Mr. Harper was unhappy with his current severance package and felt that his time spent working and helping the software company grow was not being given the fair attention it deserved. Upon representation, Mr. Harper expressed his concerns and went to Attorney Adelson. As a result, Attorney Adelson was able to negotiate severance with the software company, arranging a more rewarding exit for Mr. Harper. Employment termination and severance packages are factors that every executive employee needs to be prepared to deal with. Robert Adelson makes sure that his clients are able to voice their wants and needs about their severance, allowing them a comfortable exit for the future.

When negotiating severance for COO Bill Harper’s particular case, Attorney Adelson was successful in expanding Mr. Harper’s severance period. This gave Mr. Harper a longer period of post employment termination severance. Attorney Adelson was also able to negotiate Mr. Harper’s employment contract to include bonuses within the severance. Attorney Adelson didn’t just stop there, he was also able to negotiate changes to the COO’s termination language to allow the COO to terminate, or quit, for good reason, which would trigger his severance package.This enabled Mr. Harper to gain access to his severance on his terms of appropriate employment termination.

Robert Adelson was successful with this representative case because he applied his over 30 years experience, care and time to help Bill Harper’s case. As a Boston executive employment attorney, with clients across the country, Attorney Adelson has helped many executives negotiate strong employment contracts that take into account equity and other essential provisions. This representative case highlights the success that Attorney Adelson’s contract negotiations led to for COO Bill Harper.

*All dates, client’s names and companies have been altered to keep confidentiality.

Robert A. Adelson, Esq. is a corporate and tax attorney and partner at Engel & Schultz LLP, Boston, Massachusetts. He represents C-Level executives and key employees in negotiations over employment terms, equity, compensation, relocation, retention and separation agreements, severance packages, and where necessary suits over wrongful termination. 


Author: Robert Adelson

Robert Adelson has been a corporate and tax attorney since 1977. He began as an associate at nationally prominent New York City “mega” law firms, first at the Wall Street firm Dewey Ballantine Bushby Palmer & Wood and later at the Park Avenue firm Weil Gotshal & Manges. In 1985, Adelson returned home, where he has since established himself as a respected Boston business attorney. He has attained partner at several small and midsize Boston law firms, most recently at Lawson & Weitzen LLP and then Zimble Brettler LLP, where he was a partner from 1994 to 2004 before becoming a partner at Engel & Schultz LLP from 2004 to 2019. With the breakup of that firm over semi-retirement of senior partners, Robert Adelson formed the firm Adelson & Associates, LLC, where he is the principal, that commenced operations 1/1/2020.

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