Do they have to pay me for a promotion that was given to me at work?

UPDATED: Dec 4, 2011

Advertiser Disclosure

It’s all about you. We want to help you make the right legal decisions.

We strive to help you make confident insurance and legal decisions. Finding trusted and reliable insurance quotes and legal advice should be easy. This doesn’t influence our content. Our opinions are our own.

UPDATED: Dec 4, 2011Fact Checked

Get Legal Help Today

Compare Quotes From Top Companies and Save

secured lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

Do they have to pay me for a promotion that was given to me at work?

I was offered a promotiion at work and a $1 an hour increase but after I accepted the job I have not received the pay increase. I brought it to their attention but they said I did not notice it in time so they can not do anything now. Do they have to pay me the offered increase and the back pay?

Asked on December 4, 2011 under Employment Labor Law, Massachusetts


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

They would only have to pay you the increase (including retroactively) if one of the following applies:

1) There was an actual contract for the raise and promotion; to be a contract, you would have had to have done something which the employer made a condition of getting the raise--e.g. if you accepted a transfer to a different location or shift in exchange for a raise. But without you  having had to do anything for the raise, there would be no enforceable contract.

2) Even if you did not do anything directly for the employer, if you did something else to your detriment or disadvantage in reliance on the promise of the raise, and the employer knew or should have known you'd do that, that could possibly make the promise binding. For example, say that you'd been looking for a different job, and the employer knew that; they offered you a raise to get you to stay, and relying on that raise, you gave up some other job opportunity. That could make the promise enforceable.

Apart from the above, however, your employer may go back on its promise and not give  you the raise.

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.

Get Legal Help Today

Find the right lawyer for your legal issue.

secured lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption