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Yahoo outlines golden parachutes for employees

Internet search pioneer lays out its change-in-control severance plans for employees, should it get taken over in a buyout bid.

Yahoo laid out its golden parachute plans for all of its full-time employees Tuesday, in a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The filing outlines two change-in-control severance plans, should the Internet search pioneer find itself under new ownership, aka Microsoft.

Yahoo, which is facing an unsolicited buyout bid from Microsoft, will offer both full-time employees and executives anywhere from four months to two years of severance pay, depending on their job title.

The parachute, or cushion, will kick into effect should that employee lose his job within two years after a new owner takes over, should she get terminated without cause, or if the employee decides it's time to leave for "good reason."

Jerry Yang, Yahoo chief executive and co-founder, is also eligible for the severance package. But for Yang, his golden parachute would only net him $2 at the most, given he only earns an annual salary of $1, according to PaidContent.

Yahoo said the severance packages are designed to accomplish several things: "help retain the employees, help maintain a stable work environment and provide certain economic benefits to the employees in the event their employment is terminated (under certain circumstances)."

The golden parachute also includes health and dental coverage for the length of employees' severance awards, as well as reimbursement of outplacement services up to two years, or a maximum of $15,000, depending on job title.

This bodes well for both Yahoo and Microsoft. Yahoo wants to retain its workforce, whether it prevails over any hostile takeover attempt, or whether it walks down the aisle to a friendly merger with a desired suitor.

Microsoft, as well, would hope to retain key Yahoo employees to aid the software giant in any integration plans.