Bonuses owed per my employee agreement

My severance offer did not include outstanding bonus money that is owed to me during my employment. How do I obtain the funds owed if signing the release will void my rights?

Thank you,

1 answer  |  asked May 20, 2011 05:20 AM [EST]  |  applies to Massachusetts

Answers (1)

Kevin McGann
You say that your bonus is promised in an employment agreement. I hope that is "written".

Most severance agreements want you to forgive ALL trespasses the employer may have committed, and this would probably include disregarding your bonus. So if you sign the usual agreement (I haven't seen yours), you will have lots of trouble collecting the bonus afterward.

The simple solution is to renegotiate the severance agreement, so that the sum payable to you is improved by the bonus owed.

Or, you can change the wording of the severance agreement so that the release does not include the bonus disagreement. If you have an employment agreement in writing and under it you are eligible for the bonus at the time of your departure, you then sue the employer on contract.

If your employer insists that you either sign it as written or forget it, you probably should do the math: Which is worth more, the severance payments or the bonus?

posted by Kevin McGann  |  May 21, 2011 10:29 AM [EST]

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