Outten & Golden attorneys are experienced in reviewing equity agreements, whether public or private, and assisting employees in understanding the terms of their equity agreements. When an employer breaches an equity agreement, our attorneys work to negotiate an amicable resolution of the dispute. In case that is not possible, our attorneys are highly skilled in pursuing claims in litigation and arbitration as necessary. If a tax specialist is required to explain the tax consequences of an equity agreement, we have professionals available to ensure that our clients receive the best advice.
An equity agreement is a legal document governing the terms and conditions of equity compensation, such as stock options, restricted stock, and phantom stock. Equity Agreements specify the time period in which equity compensation is earned or paid (the vesting period). Vesting periods can be accelerated when certain trigger events occur, such as an initial public offering or sale of the company, or when an employee retires, dies, or is terminated without cause before the end of the vesting period.
Equity agreements also may include non-competition and non-solicitation agreements, which are restrictions on an individual’s employment or partnership both during employment and after employment ends.