As a sales professional, you might be having problems receiving a commission payment from your Michigan employer and you could be considering litigation if the dispute is not settled. However, your employment contract might limit your options. Whether you are employed as a sales rep or are considering a career in sales, it is important to examine your contract for clauses that may govern how you can resolve any contractual disputes.
Harvard University explains that employers may include in their employment contracts a number of alternatives to taking a dispute to court. One of these alternatives is mediation. Mediating a dispute involves discussing the issue with a mediator, who will facilitate talks between the opposing sides and attempt to work out a resolution. If the mediation fails, a civil suit might be permitted to go forward.
Employment contracts can also include a requirement to arbitrate disputes. According to FindLaw, arbitration involves a third party, known as an arbitrator, who hears the arguments presented by the disputing parties and hands down a solution. Arbitration clauses may also describe whether the arbitrator can make a binding decision and how the parties can select the arbitrator.
Some contracts include a clause that controls where a dispute can be heard. These clauses are known as choice of law provisions. In the event an employee and a company have a dispute, the laws of a specific state will govern how the dispute is heard, regardless of if the lawsuit is filed in the state of Michigan or not. Companies include these provisions because they believe the laws of a particular state can be more favorable to them.
The fact that these provisions exist does not mean that they are necessarily enforceable, so it is worth it to seek legal counsel to find out if a contract is unfairly burdensome while you seek to resolve a sales dispute. Some contracts may still violate state or federal law even if they seem to be legitimate.