If a W2 employee has earned vacation time, can an employer refuse to pay it?

UPDATED: Sep 30, 2022

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If a W2 employee has earned vacation time, can an employer refuse to pay it?

I work for a contractor. I am a salaried W2 employee. My boss lost the contract at the location I work. I have been paid my full wages, but 3 weeks of earned vacation has not been paid. Do I have recourse?

Asked on December 30, 2016 under Employment Labor Law, Illinois


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

There is no right to be paid for unused vacation time in your state unless there was a written contract stating that you would be paid for the days; without a contract guarantying payment, there is no right to e paid for unused vacation days.
If you had a contract requiring payment and the employer is refusing to pay, you could sue for breach of contract for the money, such as in small claims court as your own attorney or "pro se."

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