Employment Law Questions? Ask an Employment Lawyer.
I question the validity of the the company legal department position.
In employment law, an employer has no legal obligation to pay for the relocation of an employee. Therefore, when they do so, they may place what limitations they wish on that relocation. I see nothing in Wisconsin law (and there is certainly nothing in federal law), that would require an employer to limit their repayment requirements to only a prorated repayment system. Such repayment contracts are typically prorated, but they are not universally so.
In some instances, a court will apply a prorated repayment where the employer is the one ending the agreement. That's not the case here though, so you do not have the argument of termination by the employer.
You noted that people that came after you have contracts that show prorated repayment clauses, but not yours. For there to be an effective argument that what other people's contracts say has any legal bearing on your contract, you'd have to be able to allege that the only reason you are being treated differently is your race, religion, gender, age or disability. Then you could reasonably argue a "disparate treatment" claim. There is not, however, anything in the law that mandates that an employer treat every contract the same. That's just not true and the employer/employee relationship allows for differences in bargaining.
Hello, I wanted to check in and make sure that there was not any additional information that you required.
If you need further assistance, please use REPLY and ask me for any additional information you may need. If not, take care and have a great day.