I have a fixed-term work contract, which ends in three months. My company has just offered me a permanent one (and a two-year fixed-term, if I prefer to have it). Well, of course I would go for the permanent one. The thing is, I don't really want to stay at the company. So, my plan is to sign the contract and look for another job. When the permanent contract starts, I have 3 months notice period, so I'd better find a job until then because it is now only one month with the fixed-term. If I find a job, is it okay to terminate both work contracts?

Thank you in advance.

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    You will have consult the contract on when the terms of the contract starts. If you plan to leave why don't you extend the current contract? If you plan to move from the company its more fair to you and the company if you select the fixed-term contract. – Donald Jun 3 '14 at 11:14
  • The permanent contract starts when the fixed-term ends. Yes, I know it's somehow more flexible just extending my current contract, but there are some benefits to having a permanent contract (employee training, for example). It is not so easy to get a permanent position in where I live, so I would like to keep it in hand until I get a new one. – springrolls Jun 3 '14 at 11:21
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    You already have your answer. The terms of a contract, cannot be enforced, until the intial date indicate in the contract. – Donald Jun 3 '14 at 11:24
  • Thank you for confirming it! I was being cautious due to the fact that I have to sign the new contract so early. I don't want any trouble with the company. If you write your comment below, I could accept it as an answer. – springrolls Jun 3 '14 at 11:33
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    I normally would but the answer would be a single sentence which I truely believe does not make a good answer. I am also not a lawyer nor know nothing about contract law in your part of the world, but I find it difficult to believe, that the terms of a contract before the date indicated in the contract itself could be enforced in any capacity. Furthermore in the worst case situation even if your you now are required to put in a 3 month notice, that would also mean, your other benefits should already be activated. – Donald Jun 3 '14 at 11:39

Usually permanent contracts are written so that the enactment will overwrite the other contract unless the contract specifically says otherwise. IE if your contract does not take effect until after the current contract completes. However once you sign a contract it is usually binding meaning that you are bound to the terms of that contract and if the contract does have a future date you are bound to start working there on that date, and provide a 3 month notice period from that to be released.

If your contract has a buyout clause in order to fulfill that contract you would need to fulfill that clause and it may not be possible to do that until after you start that contract. So if you have 3 months left on your current contract, and have the new contract takes effect the first day after that contract expires, then if you sign the contract you have an effective 6 month period where you will be bound by contract to them before you would be able to get out.

If you are hoping to get out then I would delay signing the new contract until the last possible moment.

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Both types of contracts should have exit/escape clauses in case one of the parties to the contract - either you or your client, wants to end the contract and exit out of the relationship. Review the exit/escape clauses of both contracts for how much notice you must give and any financial penalties that might kick in so that you can avoid these financial penalties. Read your contracts! And discuss those terms of your contracts for which you need clarifications with your client's administrative management - most likely, HR.

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  • Yes, I have read both and in fact, I wrote it in my post. The fixed-term has 1 month notice period, while the permanent one 3 months. My question was whether it is okay to resign (provided I am still on my temporary contract) if I have already signed the permanent one? The start date is after the other ends, but the fact that I have to sign the new one so early makes me a bit cautious. – springrolls Jun 3 '14 at 10:32
  • @printemps I am not sure how the exit terms of your contracts work out. If you gave your one-month notice now, then you are covered under the terms of your three-month contract. I have no idea whether the terms of the permanent contract kicks in if you gave notice while you have less than a month to go on your temporary contract. Of course, if you gave notice after the start date of your two-year contract, then the terms of your notice you have to give will be as written in the two-year contract. You will have to sort this out with your client's administrative staff. – Vietnhi Phuvan Jun 3 '14 at 11:07
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    @printemps If you want to leave within less than the time interval prescribed by the notices, you will have to review your contracts for possible financial penalties. If you haven't signed the two-year contract yet, drag out the signing as long as you can while you are looking for that other job. It is "okay" to leave as long as the way you leave is in accordance with the terms and conditions of those of your contracts that you have signed – Vietnhi Phuvan Jun 3 '14 at 11:14

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