vacation time

I would like to know how I can get my vacation time returned to me. In 2001 my company was purchased, all employess who stayed where promised that vacations and seniority would remain the same. In 2004 the company was sold again. Now in October this year I was told that back in 2001 they paid my vacation when they should not have, ( I had to wqork a year before they paid it they said) but they have been paying it all this time. They now say I do not have any time coming until Nov 2008 to make up for their error back in 2001. I do not understand how this could happen expecially when the company had been sold since then. I have never heard a word about this all these years. I am a 21 year employee of this company.

1 answer  |  asked Dec 4, 2007 6:02 PM [EST]  |  applies to Arizona

Answers (1)

Francis Fanning
Vacation issue raises complicated question

Unfortunately, your question, which involves a relatively small amount of money, raises a difficult and complex series of questions regarding the nature of your agreement with the current employer, and whether the sale of the company in each case invloved the creation of a new employer or merely involved a transfer of stock. If the company has continued to exist all along, with only the stock ownership changing hands, then the sales have no impact on the question. Since you were continuously employed by the company, you met the one year requirement for 2001. On the other hand, if a new company was formed using the same name as the old company, your old employment relationship ended and a new one was established when the new company was formed. I suspect that this may be what happened, and the new company established a one year requirement for accruing vacation. However, if they didn't announce it at the time, you may be able to argue that you were misled into working for the new company under circumstance in which you were led to believe that the original employer's policy was still in effect and that you were entitled to vacation each year. The same question arises with the 2004 purchase of the company.
I would ask for a written explanation of the company's position regarding the vacation policy as it was then and is now. The decision to go back and assert a policy from 2001 that apparently was not followed by the owners at that time smacks of overreaching. Unfortunately, if you were to bring an action in court to collect the vacation you were denied, the attorney's fees would quickly exceed the amount in controversy.
Arizona has an agency, the Labor Division of the Industrial Commission of Arizona, that handles wage claims up to $2,500.00. If the value of the vacation time in question does not exceed that amount, you may be able to make a wage claim and have the Labor Division investigate it. Their phone number is (602)542-4515.

posted by Francis Fanning  |  Dec 5, 2007 1:35 PM [EST]

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