Author Topic: Left job. Company says they won't pay my bonus. Recourse?  (Read 4263 times)

lifejoy

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3922
  • Age: 31
  • Location: Canada, eh
  • Lovin' the Mustachian life!
    • Not Buying This
Left job. Company says they won't pay my bonus. Recourse?
« on: July 15, 2016, 12:57:11 PM »
I worked for a retail company as a manager for 11 months. I worked the entire quarter (bonuses are based upon reaching store goals and are paid out each quarter) but although I would normally have been entitled to get the bonus, because I have left the position they say no dice. The bonus is normally paid out maybe a month after the quarter?

Just wondering if there's anything that can make them pay me for the work I did. That's how I see it ;)

I live in Canada.

mtn

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1343
Re: Left job. Company says they won't pay my bonus. Recourse?
« Reply #1 on: July 15, 2016, 01:01:41 PM »
Is it in the HR manual? When I left my last job, it was very black and white--if you left on the 14th, you were out of your bonus. If you left on the 15th, you got it.

LeRainDrop

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1835
Re: Left job. Company says they won't pay my bonus. Recourse?
« Reply #2 on: July 15, 2016, 01:03:43 PM »
Ugh, that sucks.  I can't give you any specific answers -- not only do you need to know Canadian law, but probably also your specific province and your company contracts/policies -- but I can tell you this practice is extremely common in much of the US.  It may also make a difference whether your payment would truly be just a "bonus" or actually a "commission."  At my last job, our bonuses were earned based on individual performance from October 1 to September 30, but not paid out until January 31.  There was a specific statement in the bonus policy that in order to be eligible to receive the bonus, the employee must be still employed and in good standing on January 31.  Like I said, it's super-common in the US to have to be still employed and in good standing on the date that bonuses get paid, even if the earning period is already over.  This doesn't mean you should stop digging for possible recourse, just that many of us can empathize with you.

newton

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 178
Re: Left job. Company says they won't pay my bonus. Recourse?
« Reply #3 on: July 15, 2016, 01:08:17 PM »
Our company policy is that you have to be employed with the company at the time of the bonus "pay-out."  It sucks because sometimes we don't get the bonuses for the prior year until March. 

pachnik

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1854
  • Age: 56
  • Location: Vancouver, BC
Re: Left job. Company says they won't pay my bonus. Recourse?
« Reply #4 on: July 15, 2016, 01:14:37 PM »
Is it in the HR manual? When I left my last job, it was very black and white--if you left on the 14th, you were out of your bonus. If you left on the 15th, you got it.

I remember at one job my husband wouldn't leave until his bonus was paid.  He'd had a really good quarter and wanted the money.   In his case, the information about bonuses was in his employment contract.  That's another place to check.

Good luck!

randymarsh

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1374
  • Location: Denver
Re: Left job. Company says they won't pay my bonus. Recourse?
« Reply #5 on: July 15, 2016, 01:39:27 PM »
I've never heard of being paid a bonus unless you are an employee on the payment date.

Spork

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 5748
    • Spork In The Eye
Re: Left job. Company says they won't pay my bonus. Recourse?
« Reply #6 on: July 15, 2016, 02:15:40 PM »
I've never heard of being paid a bonus unless you are an employee on the payment date.

I have been paid a bonus after leaving.  In my case, if you were there Dec 31, you got the bonus in March -- whether you were employed or not.  I got a friendly call from my old boss inviting me to come by, shoot the shit with him and get my bonus check. 

mtn

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1343
Re: Left job. Company says they won't pay my bonus. Recourse?
« Reply #7 on: July 15, 2016, 02:38:34 PM »
I've never heard of being paid a bonus unless you are an employee on the payment date.

I have been paid a bonus after leaving.  In my case, if you were there Dec 31, you got the bonus in March -- whether you were employed or not.  I got a friendly call from my old boss inviting me to come by, shoot the shit with him and get my bonus check.

But if your last day was Dec 30...

This was why I only gave 1.5 weeks notice at my last job. They could have terminated my employment on Dec. 30th, and the difference from Dec. 30th to January 1 was something like $2000 between my 401k match and more PTO days that they had to pay out.

Blueskies123

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 81
Re: Left job. Company says they won't pay my bonus. Recourse?
« Reply #8 on: July 15, 2016, 02:41:38 PM »
I've never heard of being paid a bonus unless you are an employee on the payment date.

I have, almost all companies these days have this policy.Did you read the HR manual before quitting?

pdxvandal

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 323
  • Location: Earth
Re: Left job. Company says they won't pay my bonus. Recourse?
« Reply #9 on: July 15, 2016, 03:27:09 PM »
I was paid a bonus one month after I was laid off as part of a severance package. So, I guess I got lucky.

marty998

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 6958
  • Location: Sydney, Oz
Re: Left job. Company says they won't pay my bonus. Recourse?
« Reply #10 on: July 15, 2016, 05:28:02 PM »
HR at my work distinguishes between good leavers and bad leavers.

If you leave for another job you are a "bad" leaver.

If you leave for family reasons, retirement or redundancy etc then you can be put in the "good" leaver bucket, and still get a bonus or pro-rata depending on circumstances, notwithstanding not being there on bonus payment date.

lifejoy

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3922
  • Age: 31
  • Location: Canada, eh
  • Lovin' the Mustachian life!
    • Not Buying This
Re: Left job. Company says they won't pay my bonus. Recourse?
« Reply #11 on: July 15, 2016, 05:59:41 PM »
Interesting. I think this thread has made me feel better just to know that I'm not alone. Thanks guys!

My old boss asked HR. So I'm pretty sure it's a forgone conclusion.

pbkmaine

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 8336
  • Age: 63
  • Location: The Villages, Florida
Re: Left job. Company says they won't pay my bonus. Recourse?
« Reply #12 on: July 15, 2016, 06:17:02 PM »
It varies with the company. At my last employer, you had to be employed the date the bonus was paid to receive it.

BlueHouse

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3406
  • Location: WDC
Re: Left job. Company says they won't pay my bonus. Recourse?
« Reply #13 on: July 15, 2016, 07:29:12 PM »
I had a company try to withhold a prize I had won for sales, after a RIF.  I was advised to call HR and use the phrase:
"Would you mind putting in writing the reason you don't think you should pay me that [prize/commission/bonus]?  My attorney has asked for the reason in writing"

If they have a policy, they'll supply it to you.  If not, you might get your check quickly.