Lump sum severage payment promised on last day not received. Told 6 wks. Unemployment?

Hello Mel:
I did look at your severance FAQ section but I don't believe the unemployment question was addressed.
I worked nearly 5 years as a full-time employee for a major company here in Phoenix. I was layed off and the lump sum severance payment I agreed to five months ago was not given to me today as promised. I did have to sign to get my regular paycheck and turn in all badges etc. They now say it can take up to 45 days. Any recourse? Also, do I have to wait 6 weeks before I can file for unemployment?
Thank you so much for service and assistance.

1 answer  |  asked Dec 10, 2004 3:51 PM [EST]  |  applies to Arizona

Answers (1)

Francis Fanning
severance doesn't preclude unemployment claim

I will begin by answerin the easier of your two questions. You can apply for unemployment benefits immediately, regardless of the status of your severance payment. Severance benefits are not payments for work being currently performed, so you qualify to receive unemployment even if the severance is paid out over time.
The second question is a bit harder to answer. Your question mentions an agreement made five months ago. To fully understand your situation, an attorney would need to review that agreement, since that is the basis for your entitlement to severance. As a practical matter, any legal action you might take probably will not resolve the problem within 45 days. If the delay itself causes you damage, such as a foreclosure or repossession, you may have a claim for consequential damages if they were contemplated at the time the severance agreement was made and if the agreement guaranteed you payment upon layoff. If you haven't received the severance payment within a week or two, you might want to consult an attorney.
You may also want to discuss with the attorney whatever you were required to sign to get your last paycheck.

posted by Francis Fanning  |  Dec 13, 2004 10:09 PM [EST]

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