Should a non-discretionary (pro-rated) bonus, based solely on my performance, be paid upon leaving?

I receive a base salary and an incentive bonus (20% of collections of everything over a set threshold, based solely upon my performance). Some people I work with just receive a percentage of collections (ranging from 30-50%). Therefore, I feel that my "bonus" is non-discretionary and truly part of my salary, just a smaller percentage of collections given that I have a cushion (base salary). My bonus is given once a year. I will be just over 1/3 of the year into my bonus when I leave and I feel the bonus should be prorated, however, my boss states I have to be there the full year to receive the bonus. Unfortunately, I was INCREDIBLY stupid to not realize or think about having something in my contract stating it should be prorated until it was too late. While my contract states it is given once yearly, it does not specifically say what happens when I leave part way through the year. Do you have any idea if this is something I would be entitled to or do you think I'm out of luck?

2 answers  |  asked Jul 13, 2014 7:22 PM [EST]  |  applies to Pennsylvania

Answers (2)

Christopher Ezold
I am an attorney licensed in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, and the States of Delaware and New Jersey. My practice includes employment, business and health care law. Before I respond to your inquiry, I must state that we have not spoken, I have not reviewed the relevant documents and facts, and I do not represent you. Therefore, my discussion below is not a legal opinion, but is informational only. Finally, my discussion applies only to issues to which Pennsylvania, Delaware, New Jersey or Federal law applies.

That being said, if you have no agreement providing for bonus payment after termination, and the policy of the employer is to pay only if you are employed, you will have an uphill battle, at best.

/Christopher E. Ezold/

posted by Christopher Ezold  |  Jul 14, 2014 12:28 PM [EST]
Doris Dabrowski
Does your employer have a written policy about bonus accrual and payment? What is the usual practice of the company? I or another lawyer must review your written contract of employment as well as policies to advise you about entitlement to a prorated bonus.

Doris J. Dabrowski, 1525 Locust St., 14th floor, Philadelphia, PA 19102, 215-790-1115.

posted by Doris Dabrowski  |  Jul 14, 2014 08:27 AM [EST]

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