California Employment Law

Have California employment law questions? Ask a lawyer.

Ask a Lawyer,
Get an Answer ASAP!

My husband enrolled on a Becker course a year ago through one…

Customer Question
My husband enrolled on a...
My husband enrolled on a Becker course a year ago through one of the Big 5 accounting firms he worked for to get his CPA, but did not have a chance to undergo exams. Now, two-and-a-half years later he has put in his resignation. They are asking him to pay back 50 per cent of the course costs as outlined in the terms and conditions he signed. However, upon reading through these terms and conditions, it says nothing about paying it back after two years. This is what it states: IT IS AGREED AS FOLLOWS:
1. In consideration of McGladrey’s reimbursement of certain educational benefits in accordance with the Plan, Employee agrees to remain employed with McGladrey for at least two years.
2. The start date for that repayment clock begins as applicable:
a. From the date of receipt of the educational reimbursement payment,
b. From the date of registration for the Becker CPA review program, if the recipient was already an active employee, or c. From the employee start date for employees receiving Becker CPA program prior to their first day of employment with McGladrey.
3. The parties agree that Employee’s employment with McGladrey is one of at will and is not bound by any written or formal agreements, it is agreed that should the Employee voluntarily terminate employment with McGladrey after receiving education reimbursement benefits, as outlined in the Program, the Employee agrees to repay reimbursements in accordance with the schedule as indicated in Paragraph 3 and 4.
4. If the Employee voluntarily terminates employment with McGladrey prior to two (2) years from the date of reimbursement, Employee will repay McGladrey for any and all reimbursements paid by McGladrey under the Program according to the following schedule:
However, it states in a box the following: Length of Service From Date of Reimbursement Amount
Less than 1 Year 100%
More than 1 Year but less than 2 Years 50%
Since my husband has been there more than 2 years should they not state the amount after two years? Does he have any rights or does he have to pay it back? They want to take it our of his PTO..
Submitted: 2 years ago.Category: California Employment Law
Show More
Show Less
Ask Your Own California Employment Law Question
Answered in 31 minutes by:
6/23/2015
California Employment Lawyer: Patrick, Esq., Lawyer replied 2 years ago
Patrick, Esq.
Category: California Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 14,053
Experience: Significant experience in all areas of employment law.
Verified
Hello and thank you for entrusting me to assist you. My name is ***** ***** I will do everything I can to answer your question.
I understand that your husband enrolled in the program more than two years before he resigned, but did your husbands employer PAY for him to undergo the program more than two years before he resigned?
I very much look forward to helping you on this matter.
Ask Your Own California Employment Law Question
Customer reply replied 2 years ago
Hi Patrick. Thanks so much for replying!He purchased the programme in January 24th 2014. They paid for him to undergo the programme less than 2 years before he resgigned. He is now in his last week of employment with the company..
Customer reply replied 2 years ago
Does the above information make a difference at all..or does this mean he would have to pay them back..?
California Employment Lawyer: Patrick, Esq., Lawyer replied 2 years ago
Thank you,
Sorry for the delay. I am reviewing everything and will post my response momentarily....
Ask Your Own California Employment Law Question
Customer reply replied 2 years ago
Okay thanks so much!
California Employment Lawyer: Patrick, Esq., Lawyer replied 2 years ago
Thank you for your patience.
The contract requires repayment if the employee fails to "remain employed for two years." However, the contract is ambiguous as to when that two year period begins running. On one hand, the agreement provides that "The start date for that repayment clock begins . . . .From the date of registration for the Becker CPA review program, if the recipient was already an active employee." (I take it that your husband was already an employee at the time he enrolled as you state that he enrolled " through one of the Big 5 accounting firms he worked for.") Note that this clause does is not limited to "terminations," so it arguably applies to both terminations and voluntary quits. Since your husband enrolled more than two years ago, the above clause would seem to indicate that the two year period in which any reimbursement obligation could be triggered has expired and, thus, there is no repayment obligation at all.
However, there is another arguably contradictory clause below: "If the Employee voluntarily terminates employment . . .prior to two (2) years from the date of reimbursement, Employee will repay for any and all reimbursements" according to the schedule you provided.
This clause SPECIFICALLY references "voluntary termination," and it appears to define the "two year period" differently as beginning to run on the date of "reimbursement" for the program rather than from the date of "registration," as the previous clause does. This is a significant difference because it seems your husband ENROLLED more than two years before he quit but that he did not get reimbursed for the program until later. He was reimbursed within two yeas of quitting, and so would be liable to repay under THIS clause pursuant to the repayment schedule you quoted."
It is difficult to predict with any certainty how this discrepancy would be resolved. However, courts generally try to resolve ambiguities in contracts in ways that do not create inherent contradictions within the contracts. Thus, since the first clause does not specify whether it applies to terminations or resignations and the second clause specifically indicates that it applies to resignations, a court would probably be more likely to interpret the first clause as applying to terminations and the second to resignations. This way, the clauses are harmonious and not contradictory to one and other. According to this interpretation, an individual in your husband's circumstance would be required to pay back what he received pursuant to the repayment schedule quoted, using the date he RECEIVED his reimbursement for the program as the start date for the two year period.
I hope that you find this information helpful. Please do not hesitate to let me know if you have any questions or concerns regarding the above and I will be more than happy to assist you further.
If you do not require any further assistance, please be so kind as to provide a positive rating of my service so that I may receive credit for assisting you. Very best wishes moving forward.
Ask Your Own California Employment Law Question
California Employment Lawyer: Patrick, Esq., Lawyer replied 2 years ago
Was I able to answer your question? I have not heard back from you. Please let me know if I can provide any clarification.....
Ask Your Own California Employment Law Question
Was this answer helpful?
Ask Patrick, Esq. Your Own Question
Patrick, Esq.
Patrick, Esq.
Patrick, Esq., Lawyer
Category: California Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 14,053
14,053 Satisfied Customers
Experience: Significant experience in all areas of employment law.

Patrick, Esq. is online now

A new question is answered every 9 seconds

How JustAnswer works:

  • Ask an ExpertExperts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional AnswerVia email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site. Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction GuaranteeRate the answer you receive.

JustAnswer in the News:

Ask-a-doc Web sites: If you've got a quick question, you can try to get an answer from sites that say they have various specialists on hand to give quick answers... Justanswer.com.
JustAnswer.com...has seen a spike since October in legal questions from readers about layoffs, unemployment and severance.
Web sites like justanswer.com/legal
...leave nothing to chance.
Traffic on JustAnswer rose 14 percent...and had nearly 400,000 page views in 30 days...inquiries related to stress, high blood pressure, drinking and heart pain jumped 33 percent.
Tory Johnson, GMA Workplace Contributor, discusses work-from-home jobs, such as JustAnswer in which verified Experts answer people’s questions.
I will tell you that...the things you have to go through to be an Expert are quite rigorous.

What Customers are Saying:

Mr. Kaplun clearly had an exceptional understanding of the issue and was able to explain it concisely. I would recommend JustAnswer to anyone. Great service that lives up to its promises!

Gary B.Edmond, OK

My Expert was fast and seemed to have the answer to my taser question at the tips of her fingers. Communication was excellent. I left feeling confident in her answer.

EricRedwood City, CA

I am very pleased with JustAnswer as a place to go for divorce or criminal law knowledge and insight.

MichaelWichita, KS

PaulMJD helped me with questions I had regarding an urgent legal matter. His answers were excellent.

Three H.Houston, TX

Anne was extremely helpful. Her information put me in the right direction for action that kept me legal, possible saving me a ton of money in the future. Thank you again, Anne!!

ElaineAtlanta, GA

It worked great. I had the facts and I presented them to my ex-landlord and she folded and returned my deposit. The 50 bucks I spent with you solved my problem.

TonyApopka, FL

Wonderful service, prompt, efficient, and accurate. Couldn't have asked for more. I cannot thank you enough for your help.

Mary C.Freshfield, Liverpool, UK

< Previous | Next >

Meet the Experts:

LawTalk

LawTalk

Attorney

1,285 satisfied customers

I have 30 years of experience in the practice of law, including employment law and discrimination law.

Tina

Tina

Attorney

923 satisfied customers

JD, 17 years experience & recognized by ABA for excellence in employment law.

Brandon, Esq.

Brandon, Esq.

Lawyer

348 satisfied customers

Has received a certificate of recognition from the California State Senate for his outstanding legal service.

melissamesq

melissamesq

Attorney

47 satisfied customers

Represent clients to maximum recovery in employment cases.

legalg

legalg

Other

53 satisfied customers

General Practitioner. Research Attorney

Roy Hadavi

Roy Hadavi

14 satisfied customers

Attorney at Law Offices of Rosenstein & Associates

Attorney2020

Attorney2020

Lawyer.

69 satisfied customers

I have significant experience in employment law.

< Previous | Next >

Related California Employment Law Questions
Can an employer in CA require that employees that use
Can an employer in CA require that employees that use Company vehicles for personal and business use, pay a portion of the maintenance for that vehicle?… read more
socrateaser
socrateaser
1,031 satisfied customers
I usually go on SDI when I have to but know my employer
i usually go on SDI when I have to but know my employer wants me to take FMLA, why? … read more
Patrick, Esq.
Patrick, Esq.
Lawyer
14,053 satisfied customers
I'm a restaurant manager. Can my boss force me to repay a
I'm a restaurant manager. Can my boss force me to repay a $200 cash shortage from me giving the bar too much change? If so, shouldn't the bartender be required to repay a portion as well?… read more
legalg
legalg
Other
Juris Doctorate
53 satisfied customers
I left the company I worked for and received two additional
Hello. I left the company I worked for and received two additional payroll checks before I was contacted to pay the money back. Am I on a time frame to pay this back? … read more
Patrick, Esq.
Patrick, Esq.
Lawyer
14,053 satisfied customers
My partner was hired in August 2017 as senior marketing
My partner was hired in August 2017 as senior marketing manager for a small downtown San Francisco tech startup (around 24 employees). Her VP of marketing and some others left the ship over the last f… read more
socrateaser
socrateaser
1,031 satisfied customers
My son's employer put together a list of approved drivers
My son's employer put together a list of approved drivers for taking patients out of their facility. They posted the list with names and driver's license numbers in a common area, and provided that li… read more
Legal Eagle
Legal Eagle
Attorney
Doctoral Degree
11,224 satisfied customers
Following the Dynamex decision I think I may be a
Hello, following the Dynamex decision I think I may be a misclassified W2 and I am interested in finding out whether I can benefit myself by pursuing it. … read more
socrateaser
socrateaser
1,031 satisfied customers
My wife works in a Veterinary Medical field and had a
Hello, My wife works in a Veterinary Medical field and had a complaint filed against her by an angry co-worker saying my wife was bullying/harassing after my wife asked her to please stop doing someth… read more
socrateaser
socrateaser
1,031 satisfied customers
I am a registered nurse working in assisted living in
I am a registered nurse working in assisted living in California. Last week a nurse from the hospital informed me that an unresponsive resident would be returning at 5 pm and a hospice nurse would be … read more
socrateaser
socrateaser
1,031 satisfied customers
I am a medical marijuana patient living in California who is
I am a medical marijuana patient living in California who is planning to move to Wisconsin to be a student full time. I will also be needed a part time job to help pay for living expenses. Most jobs i… read more
David C. Garner
David C. Garner
Attorney
Post-Doctoral Degree
896 satisfied customers
A probono attorney filed a harassment lawsuit against my
A probono attorney filed a sexual harassment lawsuit against my prior employer over a year ago, within the statute of limitations. I haven't heard anything much since. Is the employer obligated to res… read more
Eric Y., Esq.
Eric Y., Esq.
Law/J.D.
172 satisfied customers
How much does your service cost? HR and lawyer. At will and
It's a conditional offer being rescinded because of a pending background check… read more
Patrick, Esq.
Patrick, Esq.
Lawyer
14,053 satisfied customers
I have been on salary for several years and have never
I have been on salary for several years and have never received any overtime pay do i get overtime pay … read more
Patrick, Esq.
Patrick, Esq.
Lawyer
14,053 satisfied customers
I am interested in speaking with a CA unemployment law
Hi, I am interested in speaking with a CA unemployment law attorney. Thank you. … read more
socrateaser
socrateaser
1,031 satisfied customers
Mr/Ms. Ca, no start yet, I am employer I hire contractor for
I am employer I hire contractor for for contraction work by W-9… read more
socrateaser
socrateaser
1,031 satisfied customers
Does a wife have to take the survival benefits of a husbands
Does a wife have to take the survival benefits of a husbands plan? … read more
Legal Eagle
Legal Eagle
Attorney
Doctoral Degree
11,224 satisfied customers
I am employed by a California company on their payroll in
I am employed by a California company on their payroll in California. I have lived and worked only in California for the last 12 years and for this employer for 3 years. My employer is a subsidiary of… read more
Patrick, Esq.
Patrick, Esq.
Lawyer
14,053 satisfied customers
I am a contract employee of a contract company with a
I am a contract employee of a contract company with a government contract. I have concerns about how several positions on this contract have been "appointed" and not posted for all of us to apply for.… read more
Legal Eagle
Legal Eagle
Attorney
Doctoral Degree
11,224 satisfied customers

DISCLAIMER: Answers from Experts on JustAnswer are not substitutes for the advice of an attorney. JustAnswer is a public forum and questions and responses are not private or confidential or protected by the attorney-client privilege. The Expert above is not your attorney, and the response above is not legal advice. You should not read this response to propose specific action or address specific circumstances, but only to give you a sense of general principles of law that might affect the situation you describe. Application of these general principles to particular circumstances must be done by a lawyer who has spoken with you in confidence, learned all relevant information, and explored various options. Before acting on these general principles, you should hire a lawyer licensed to practice law in the jurisdiction to which your question pertains.

The responses above are from individual Experts, not JustAnswer. The site and services are provided “as is”. To view the verified credential of an Expert, click on the “Verified” symbol in the Expert’s profile. This site is not for emergency questions which should be directed immediately by telephone or in-person to qualified professionals. Please carefully read the Terms of Service (last updated February 8, 2012).

DISCLAIMER: Answers from Experts on JustAnswer are not substitutes for the advice of an attorney. JustAnswer is a public forum and questions and responses are not private or confidential or protected by the attorney-client privilege. The Expert above is not your attorney, and the response above is not legal advice. You should not read this response to propose specific action or address specific circumstances, but only to give you a sense of general principles of law that might affect the situation you describe. Application of these general principles to particular circumstances must be done by a lawyer who has spoken with you in confidence, learned all relevant information, and explored various options. Before acting on these general principles, you should hire a lawyer licensed to practice law in the jurisdiction to which your question pertains.

The responses above are from individual Experts, not JustAnswer. The site and services are provided “as is”. To view the verified credential of an Expert, click on the “Verified” symbol in the Expert’s profile. This site is not for emergency questions which should be directed immediately by telephone or in-person to qualified professionals. Please carefully read the Terms of Service (last updated February 8, 2012).

Show MoreShow Less

Ask Your Question

x