When I resigned from my former company last month, I was asked to sign an agreement which stated that I was to pay back education assistance money that was paid to me. The document was hand dated by the office manager dating back to a year before I signed it. I don't believe I am contractually obligated to pay the money back because I had already been through a year of school, my company had already reimbursed me for the tuition, and then I signed an agreement that was predated. Please advise.
Country relating to Question: United States
State (if USA): Georgia
I received a certified letter from my former employer stating that if I don't pay back in full by the end of the month, then I will have to pay a 1.5% interest monthly until the debt is paid off. It also stated that if I do not pay by the end of the month, then my former company will proceed legally, which then they say I will be liable for their attorney fees. However, there were no terms in the agreement that I signed.
Hello and thank you for using the JA website. Please remember that this site is intended to provide general legal information only.What exactly is your question? Are you saying that you did sign the agreement?
Yes, I signed an agreement that was PREDATED. I went to school. My company told me they would pay as an Incentive to me. A year later they wanted me to sign an agreement stating I was to work for 3 years following the date of Reimbursement or I would have to pay the money back.
Just to clarify, you signed an agreement which stated that you would have to repay the money AFTER you resigned from them and you agreed that you would work for them for 3 years after you had already resigned? I'm trying to understand the order of things...
I signed the agreement two weeks before I resigned. I signed the document in March 2012, the office manager dated it as if I signed it in January 2011. Sorry, that was confusing.
One last question before I give you an answer. You signed an agreement in which you agreed to work for them for 3 more years and if you did not, you would have to repay them for the Tuition Reimbursement and then you resigned 2 weeks after you agreed to that?
Yes, I had an opportunity that I couldn't turn down.
Unfortunately, if you signed an agreement stating that you agree to pay back X amount of money if you leave before 3 years, then that agreement is an enforceable contract. A contract would only be unenforceable if you signed under duress or if there was Fraud involved or you were not legally able to enter into a legal contract. If they do decide to pursue it, you might want to consider hiring an attorney who can review the contract to see if there are any outs available to you.With respect to the legal fees, if the contract did not say that you would pay for legal fees, then you most likely would not have to pay their legal fees if they take you to court.Please let me know if you need any clarification.
Predating documents isn't fraudulent?
Are you saying that they changed the date AFTER you signed it? My answer was based on my understanding that the agreement had the date on it when you signed it.
The office manager hand dated the document before I signed it. I thought that in any contract, the signee must sign and DATE the contract.
No, that would only be fraud if they changed it after you signed it. A contract requires an offer, acceptance, and consideration to be enforceable. The standard form of acceptance is a signature. Thus, if you signed the contract knowing that it was meant to be retroactive, then it would not be fraudulent. Fraud would be if, for example, the contract said it began on Jan. 1, 2012 and then, after you signed it, it was changed to Jan 1, 2011.
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