Retaliation after resignation announcement

I recently resigned from a state university faculty position to accept a more desirable appointment elsewhere. Within 2 weeks of announcing my resignation (with > 3 months notice as a courtesy), my employer a) arbitrary implemented for me an existing salary withhold formula which had previously been disregarded for at least 2 years for all other employees of my section. It cost me $3500, and b) immediately assigned me additional intense hours and duties over and above those routinely included in my position (salaried, not hourly).

Do I have a claim of retaliation or other mistreatment?

1 answer  |  asked Sep 13, 2003 12:22 AM [EST]  |  applies to Arizona

Answers (1)

Francis Fanning
Retaliation isn't always illegal

From your question is sounds like your employer clearly was/is upset at your resignation and has chosen to retaliate. However, there is no law prohibiting any form of retaliation by an employer. Certain laws, such as the Civil Rights Act and other similar laws, prohibit retaliation for protected activity, i.e. complaining about unlawful discrimination or participating in proceedings as a party or a witness to allegedly discriminatory practices. There is no anti-retaliation statute that protects against retaliation for announcing your resignation. Whether you have some due process right to challenge the retaliation depends upon factors that require a more detailed investigation of your job, your status with the university and other questions beyond the scope of this website.
As far as the "salary withhold formula" is concerned, I am not sure whether you are talking about federal and state tax withholding or something else. If the issue is tax withholding, you have lost nothing. You will get credit for the excess withholding when you file your tax return, and perhaps a hefty refund. While you have lost the use of the money for a few months, that isn't something significant enough to warrant a lawsuit or other legal action. If the "withholding" is some kind of salary reduction, you may have a possible claim for unpaid wages. Again, I would need more information to know how to advise you.
If it is important enough that you want to pursue it (and for most people $3,500.00 is nothing to sneeze at), I suggest that you consult with an employment lawyer.

posted by Francis Fanning  |  Sep 14, 2003 6:59 PM [EST]

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