Promotion with a promised raise after 3 months

I was prompted to a supervisor and was promised a raise after 3 months in position. An email was sent out to the organization announcing my promotion , I have emailed HR, and have escalated this to upper management in corp with no response. After a year in position, they demolished the position making it unavailable. Now I'm back at the first my first position where the new employees are getting paid at a higher rate than what I am ... what do to..

1 answer  |  asked Dec 21, 2016 12:50 PM [EST]  |  applies to New York

Answers (1)

V Jonas Urba
Most employees are "at-will" employees. If you have no contract of employment (date certain to date certain), do not work for the government, or are not covered by a union's collective bargaining agreement then you are probably at will.

At will employees can be terminated for a good, a bad, or no reason at all. At will employees may not be terminated for a discriminatory or illegal reason. If you are within a protected category of employees (one example would be an over 40 employee) and you are terminated because of your age and can prove that age was the motivating factor for terminating you then you might have a cause of action assuming you could prove that.

Position elimination is NOT illegal unless a contract or agreement or civil service rules forbid elimination. In fact, positions and titles generally play little role unless the title and higher pay go hand in hand.

Lowering pay is also not illegal unless your compensation falls below minimum wage. Although you could probably still collect unemployment if your pay was cut substantially and you quit - but don't count on that.

Bottom line is that you probably should start looking for another job. Push corporate too hard and they could eliminate the position you still have unless you can prove there was discrimination or that you filed some external complaint or charge and they retaliated against you.

Paying a labor and employment lawyer can be worth the price. If you think there will be or could be discrimination down the line we often work with employees for months and sometimes longer without an employer knowing someone is being counseled. We help employees look for certain behaviors, document their own cases, and then wait for termination to happen. Unless an employee is very good at keeping documents proving employment discrimination without this type of procedure is tough.

If you are being paid above market rates, think finding another job will be tough, or your skills are very limited to a narrow line of work, or you have non-competes which tie your options up getting legal counsel is not even optional. It's mandatory. If you can land another job paying what you make now pretty easily do that and save some money that you would otherwise pay lawyers.

Most of us don't want to take your money unless you truly need us and then we do charge you because we have bills to pay like everyone else. Employees who thank us for spending 15 or 60 minutes on the phone if we think you might have a case down the road are the ones we like to work with. Clients have to be willing to work with their lawyers to resolve employment law matters. Good luck.

posted by V Jonas Urba  |  Dec 21, 2016 1:08 PM [EST]

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