It may be helpful to give the employee general time frames to meet each of the terms of the last-chance agreement, to ensure that the employee moves forward towards a return to work and productivity. For example, the employee may be required to go to rehab as soon as the institution can accommodate him, submit status reports mid-term and after closing, and undergo monthly drug or alcohol testing within the first six months of returning to work. Discipline an employee for poor performance or bad behavior is never easy. I hope this is a rare event for most employees. However, if this is not the case, a supervisor should always try to ensure that the employee: (1) receives a clear message as to why his or her behaviour was false and (2) fully understands the consequences of such behaviour in the future. In some unique circumstances, the best way to achieve these goals is a document commonly referred to as a « last chance agreement. » As the name suggests, an employer generally uses this tool only for monstrous errors or situations where there are chronic performance problems and where progressive discipline has not been successful. Here are some of the terms that are usually included in last-chance agreements for employees with drug or alcohol problems: last-minute agreements can be a very useful conservation tool in some situations, but they should be tailored to each individual situation. Employers who choose them can venture to their lawyer. For more information on other topics to consider, see: Use Last-Chance agreements as a storage tool. A last-chance agreement is a disciplinary measure, but if used fairly, it can be an opportunity to re-establish a damaged relationship. From the employee`s point of view, it is a chance to keep his or her job. From the employer`s point of view, this is an opportunity to be lenient and to retain the employment of a skilled worker. An employer may choose, but is not required by the ADA to offer a « fixed choice » or a « last chance » to a worker who, failing that, due to poor performance or misbehaviour due to alcohol or drug abuse.
In general, an employer undertakes, as part of a « firm decision » or « last chance agreement », not to dismiss the employee in exchange for a worker`s agreement, to receive treatment for drug addiction, to renounce the use of alcohol or drugs and to avoid other problems in the workplace. As a general rule, a violation of such an agreement justifies dismissal because the worker does not meet the conditions of continued employment. Employers generally strive to retain current employees because an experienced employee can add value to a business and because the high costs associated with recruiting and training new employees are attributable. If employees have temporary problems that lead them to violate company guidelines, to the point where they are about to be fired, employers should consider a last chance (also called a fixed choice) to keep the employee while protecting the business. A last-chance agreement is an agreement between an employer and an employee that defines the conditions the worker must meet in order to keep his or her job. Although employers are not required to offer last-chance agreements under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), these agreements are often used for workers who have relapsed drug or alcohol dependent and whose current drug or alcohol use is causing problems in the workplace. Once the employee has read and accepted the terms of the last-chance agreement, the worker and employer should sign and date the agreement. If you do not yet have a model for such an agreement, the following points will serve as a good starting point.
If you do, they can serve as a checklist to ensure that your agreement is complete. To be most effective, a last-chance agreement should include the following: