Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Read what you sign

What if an employee alters a contract but no one catches the changes before the employer signs? From Workplace Management:

Laura R. Kreisler pleaded guilty last year to stealing more than $857,000 from Creative Consumer Concepts Inc., or C3, as it’s known in its hometown of Overland Park, Kansas. She was sentenced to seven years in prison.

Case closed? Not really. The embezzlement came to light about a month after she was fired in November 2004 for insubordination. When C3 fired her, the company offered to continue paying her salary for six months. She took the severance contract home and scanned it into her computer and added a provision that would allow her to keep the extra pay even if the firm sued her. Unaware that the contract had been altered, C3’s human resources manager signed it.

Employer got lucky in this case because the wrong person signed for the employer. Be careful what you sign is an old proverb made even more important with today's technology. While I am not so sure that employee would win every time, what business can afford the time and expense of a law suit? Always read before signing.