That`s why it`s important to get legal advice from a family law lawyer before signing a separation contract. Independent legal advice helps ensure that the parties inadvertently fail to reach an unfair agreement. After signing the termination agreement and accepting the money, McClellan filed a discrimination complaint against the Midwest with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Opportunity Commission (EEOC). After receiving a notice of appeal from the EEOC, McClellan filed a lawsuit against Midwest, claiming that she had been fired for a pregnancy in violation of Title VII and that she had been subjected to unequal payment in violation of the EPA. In his complaint of discrimination in the workplace, McClellan argued that the termination agreement was not a valid and enforceable contract, given that it is the product of coercion. Although a signed severance pay agreement prevents a terminated employee from suing his or her former employer, there are a large number of factors that invalidate such a contract and allow it to be challenged. In Maryland, the courts have generally considered separation agreements to be similar to general contracts. In Young v.
Anne Arundel County, 146 Md App. 526, 562 (Ms. Ct. Spec. App. 2002), the wife challenged the validity of the separation agreement, claiming that she had signed the agreement under duress. The Court of Appeal dismissed the case in order to deal with the rights of coercion, incapacity and consideration relating to the separation agreement. In considering the matter, the Court found that a marriage separation contract was subject, as a contract, to the same general design rules as those applicable to other contracts. Id.
at 562. Is a separation agreement concluded without consideration and under duress applicable? Therefore, the doctrine of coercion can be used to challenge any manipulative behavior during the negotiation phase that one person sends to the grace of another. . . .