What is the name of your state? Wisconsin
I will get right to the point and spare you the lengthy details for now. The short story is...After an investigation by my employer into allegations of harrassment (not sexual harrassment) made against me, I was presented with a "last chance agreement" as to my employment. If I did not sign the agreement, I was to be terminated immediately.
Among other things contained in the document was a clause that I would give up any rights to grieve (under a collective bargaining agreement), or make any claims against my employer (like suing my employer in civil court). Basically if I signed the agreement, I would have no recourse against my employer in any way. If I didn't sign the agreement, I would be fired.
I had been employed for nearly 10 years. So, I had a significant investment of time and effort into my job. More importantly, the reason I felt as if I was "forced" to sign the agreement is the fact that I have a medical condition wherein I could be hospitalized at any time without warning. Without the health insurance provided by my employer, should I require hospitalization it would severely burden my family financially. Therefore I felt that I had no choice but to sign the unfair and heavy-handed agreement.
My question is, can my employer force me to give up my right to sue them in a civil court? I have not consulted an attorney directly on this matter as of this time. Given the circumstances with my health condition etc...could an argument be made that I signed the agreement under durress?
I'm looking forward to hearing your replies. Thank you for any input.