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Marsha411JD, Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 19673
Experience:  Licensed Attorney with 29 yrs. exp in Employment Law
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I worked software company until Friday, March 25, then

Customer Question

I worked for a software company until Friday, March 25, then was laid off with the rest of the sales organization as the investors decided to sell the company (targeting a sale by the end of April). The company remained operational, though, just scaled back - with our customer support team in place, for example. The company offered no severance - and they did not pay any sales commissions due (or commissions for orders that they avoided by laying off the sales team prior to the final week when the orders were expected to come in). My commission plan was based on 10 sales for the quarter, and one order had closed prior to my last day. Five or Six orders were expected to come in during the last week. With the news of the company being sold, only three of those orders ended up coming in (the others decided to wait until they knew the outcome of the acquisition) there were a total of 4 orders that closed during the quarter (my commissions would total $12,000 for these orders = $3k per order). Given that one of the orders was already placed before my last day, I assume at minimum the company owes commission for that...but I also believe a company cannot avoid payment of commissions by letting the sales team go and still accepting those orders. Any advice?
Submitted: 6 months ago.
Category: Employment Law
Expert:  Marsha411JD replied 6 months ago.
Hello,Thank you for the information and your question. Unless an attorney has read your commission agreement and is representing you in an attorney-client relationship, there is no way to guess whether or not you are entitled to the entire commission you mentioned. In other words, whether or not you are entitled to commission payments depends entirely on the exact language of your commission agreement, in particular what it says about "earned" commissions. If there is nothing in writing, then it becomes and issue of their past practices in terms of what they count as "earned." I would agree that unless there is some provision in the commission agreement that I am unaware, that if you did everything that is normally required for the commission to be earned, you would be entitled to commission payments for the order you reference as being placed before your last day. The other situations again depend on your commission agreement and how a court would interpret the situation. You can file a wage claim with the State, or file suit against the employer if they refuse to pay you the money you believe you are owed under the commission agreement. Please feel free to ask for clarification if needed. If needed, then if you could take a moment to leave a positive rating, I will receive credit for assisting you today. Thank you
Expert:  Marsha411JD replied 6 months ago.
Hello again,I wanted to touch base with you and make sure that you did not have any follow up questions for me from the answer I provided to you on the 6th. For some reason, the Experts are not always getting replies or ratings (at the top of the question/answer page you are viewing or in the pop up box for this question), which is how we get credit (paid by the Site) for our work, that the customer thinks have gone through. In your case I received neither. Please keep in mind that I cannot control the law or your circumstances, and am ethically bound to provide you with accurate information based on the facts you give me even if the news is not good. If you are having technical difficulties with reading, replying or rating, please let me know so that I can inform the Site administrator. Please note that Site use works best while using a computer and using either Google Chrome or Firefox. In any event, it was a pleasure assisting you and I would be glad to attempt to assist you further on this issue, or a new legal issue,if needed. You can bookmark my page at: you.

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