Can an employer with hold pay for vacation days taken in Jan if I quit in March?

Started work in March 2015 and received a salary. My letter of offer says, 10 days of paid vacation. I took 7 days of vacation in January 2016. I recently found a new job and I gave notice to leave March 1. Boss says he will with hold from my paycheck 7 days of vacation pay. Can he legally do this under the NY Labor Laws?

1 answer  |  asked Feb 24, 2016 8:06 PM [EST]  |  applies to New York

Answers (1)

V Jonas Urba
Entitlement to paid vacation in general does not exist in New York State. However, you must be treated the same as any other employee regarding terms and conditions of employment. Maybe you did not provide enough notice or you left within "x" number of days after vacation and they never pay employees for doing so. Did you know that this employer will not pay you for accrued vacation if you take it just before resigning? Did you either have the new job confirmed or interviewed for it during your vacation?

Most offer letters, like employee handbooks, state that they are not contracts of employment and that you remain an "employee at will."

You should consult with a labor and employment attorney if you believe that you have a breach of contract claim. But remember that if it goes to court the amount of damages may not be worth hiring a lawyer unless your offer letter rises to the level of a contract AND states that the prevailing party in a contract breach recovers attorneys' fees. This is why your employer will probably not pay and your negotiation of something might be your best option. See if the employer will give you a glowing reference letter (that you can then use for your next position) in the worst case scenario.

posted by V Jonas Urba  |  Feb 25, 2016 05:36 AM [EST]

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