Bonus owed to me but employer wont pay out because i gave notice

UPDATED: Jan 10, 2018

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Bonus owed to me but employer wont pay out because i gave notice

My employer for 8 years promised me a 5k bonus for staying in my position July
2017-Dec 2017. This was confirmed via phone call on 1/3/18 that i would receive
my bonus.

I put in my notice and my employer is not saying i forfeit the bonus because i
will be leaving before they distribute the pay out.

There is nothing is writing from my employer stating this.

Asked on January 10, 2018 under Employment Labor Law, California


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

If there is no written employment or bonus agreement guarantying you the bonus, it was a discretionary bonus--i.e. one paid (or not paid) at the free and voluntary choice of the employer. An employer may renege or go back on a promise to pay a discretionary bonus at any time, for any reason--you only get it if the employer chooses to pay it. Therefore, they could refuse to pay it and you would have no recourse.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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