There are no hard and fast rules about how long an employee should be given to consider an offer made to them under the terms of a Settlement Agreement. However, ACAS who are an independent public body funded by the government, produce helpful guidance on various employment related issues including Settlement Agreements. This guidance is not set down in law but is often referred to in Employment Tribunal cases as good practice.
The guidance states that the individual should be given “reasonable time” to consider an offer made by their employer by way of a Settlement Agreement. The word reasonable is often used in law and what is reasonable will depend on the circumstances in each scenario and the parties can always agree on what is a reasonable time. In the absence of an agreement between the parties, the employer should allow the employee at least 10 calendar days to consider the proposed terms of
a Settlement Agreement and to take independent legal advice. These terms should be in writing and follow the required format of a Settlement Agreement.
We are often instructed by individuals who have been given a lot less than 10 days to seek advice on a Settlement Agreement and return it to the employer fully signed. We will do our best to work to your deadline.