Can I get fired if I sue to get my commission?

Currently my employment contract is both salary and commissioned based. I am in a situation where the commission side of my contract is not being paid. I have submitted in writing demands for payment. I am considering legal action, if I seek legal assistance in resolving this issue can they fire me. The company I work for is holding roughly $55k in commissions. I have everything in writing and signed be the president of the company, who was recently relieved of his position. What should I do? Can I place a lien on the project in which the commission was based? Any help will do.

1 answer  |  asked Mar 15, 2001 8:29 PM [EST]  |  applies to Texas

Answers (1)

Margaret A. Harris
You could lose your job if you sue your employer.

You asked whether your employer can fire you if you seek legal assistance in collecting the commissions you are due. The bad news is that Texas law gives employers the right to fire employees "at will," which means any time they want to and for whatever reasons strikes their fancy. There are some exceptions to this rule, though. Your contract might provide you some rights, for example. And, if you are fired because of the color of your skin, because your employer doesn't like people of your religion or national origin, etc., then those too are exceptions. I also have a question: While your employer might very well fire you for trying to collect what is yours, why do you want to be working for such someone who is already treating you like this anyway? Perhaps if you're fired it will be in violation of your contract (just like withholding your commissions is a violation of your contract). You should take your contract to an employment lawyer in Austin and get some advice based on what the document says.

posted by Margaret A. Harris  |  Feb 21, 2001 10:12 AM [EST]

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