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How do you know if you can discuss an offer letter with someone?

If you receive an offer letter how do you know if are you allowed to review it with someone? If I want to ask the recruiter if I could share it with just my mentor to get advice on the offer is this professional? How should I phrase the question when asking?

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Jane’s Answer

You don't have to ask your recruiter to be able to share the offer letter. And if you're still considering asking the recruiter, I would suggest not asking the recruiter at all. The recruiter is really there just to make money from being a middleman. They make more money if they can hire someone for the said company for cheaper, so it's probably to their benefit if they gives you less benefits. I'd definitely share the offer letter with your mentor and any other adult you trust - doing this is definitely normal and professional! (If someone ever suggests it's not professional, I would be incredibly wary of them. Companies and managers aren't always ethical, so you have to watch out for yourself.)
Thank you comment icon This was super helpful, thank you! Sam
Thank you comment icon Just wanted to mention that some recruiters are commission based and make a percentage of the total compensation package, which means the higher the salary offered, the higher their commission. So it’s not always in their best interest to have the company offer a lower salary. Their only priority is to make a match. With that said, I do agree to have someone you trust review your offer letter with you. If a company is interested enough in you, they’ll be willing to negotiate within reason. Lauren Madison
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Carl’s Answer

Hi Sam. I echo the previous opinion. It is in your best interest to review the offer letter with a mentor or an adult that can give sound advice. Most companies will tell you not to share this information because it is not in their best interest. I would take this a step further and advise you to look at salary comparisons on glassdoor.com and salary.com. This will give you an idea of what your position is paying in the industry and maybe even the company that provided you the offer letter. To put this in perspective, a former co-worker told me she applied for a job, was given an offer of $50K, saw the same job opening for another company on Indeed with the starting salary was over $100K. Don't lowball yourself. Share that letter and get advice.
Thank you comment icon I appreciate this, thank you for the advice. Sam
Thank you comment icon You're welcome! Carl Manson Jr., PMP
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Kritsina’s Answer

Hi Sam, I would suggest sharing the letter with your mentor first before accepting it to get some guidance that the offer is fair for you. I don't see the need to ask a recruiter. If you feel that the offer does not meet your expectation, always remember that you can negotiate within reason. The most that will happen is they will say no but it's always worth a try.
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