Employment Law

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I have a question regarding salary raises and bonus plans. I…

Customer Question
I have a question...

I have a question regarding salary raises and bonus plans.

Lawyer's Assistant: Have you discussed this with a manager or HR? Or with a lawyer?

Yes. I signed a 3 yr incremental salary and bonus increase with my company at the end of 2014. The 3 yr plan was to begin in 2015. For 2015 and 2016 I received the agreed upon increases but in 2017, the last year of increase, it was not given to me. The CEO and HR TEAM I signed this agreement with is no longer with the company. When I approached the new team to ask why this was not given in 2017 or communicate a change to plan they could not give me an answer. I have been asking for resolution to this since Nov. 2017 and curious as to my next step options. The amount of money this represents is between $25,000-$30,000.

Lawyer's Assistant: Are you an "at will" employee? Do you belong to a union?

At will.

Lawyer's Assistant: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?

Should be enough for now

Submitted: 1 month ago.Category: Employment Law
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Answered in 2 hours by:
3/17/2018
Employment Lawyer: Attorney Wendy, Lawyer replied 1 month ago
Attorney Wendy
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 531
Experience: Member at Keefer & Keefer LLC
Verified

Hello. My name is ***** ***** I am an attorney. If there is a signed agreement setting out the bonus terms, the company should be bound by those terms. Generally, just bonus structure and incentives can be changed by the company at any time. The exception is when - which sounds like it happened here - the agreement is for a set period of time with a concrete method to calculate the bonus and where the parties both signed off on that bonus structure. This situation is an exception to most rules governing bonuses, where they remain discretionary and are subject to the whims of the employer. Where there is a contractual requirement to pay the bonus and the bonus is not paid, it can be treated as wages and most states have laws governing exactly how long an employer has to pay wages and sets penalties for the failure to pay wages on time. In addition, reporting the failure to your state employment agency can be helpful, but only if you are unable to resolve the issue with your employer. It may be that a written/letter request would be helpful, attaching the signed document and setting out that this was for a 3 year period, that they paid it the first two but have failed to pay the final year's bonus, and that if it is not paid by (set a date) you will be forced to take other action. If you can tell me what state you are in and provide a copy of what was signed, I may be able to provide additional help and information.

If you need further help, please reply to this email. If I answered your question and provided excellent service, I would greatly appreciate your 5 star rating at this time.

Please note: This information is for educational purposes only and is not legal advice. No course of action has been proposed and no attorney-client relationship or privilege has been formed as a result of this conversation.

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Customer reply replied 1 month ago
Hi Wendy,I work in the state of Georgia but the company’s US Corporate office is headquartered in Dallas, Tx. Of the amount not paid $8,000 is salary with the remaining balance being incorrectly calculated bonus. For example my monthly base bonus for 2016 was $3910 but in 2017 it was supposed the monthly bonus was supposed to be a base of $4500. I will try to attach a file showing this program in the next day.
Employment Lawyer: Attorney Wendy, Lawyer replied 1 month ago

Whatever documentation you have would be helpful and I'll let you know your options.

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Attorney Wendy
Attorney Wendy, Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 531
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Experience: Member at Keefer & Keefer LLC

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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).

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