If I am leaving my job and my employer offers additional compensation to keep me on longer, are those new terms enforceable?

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If I am leaving my job and my employer offers additional compensation to keep me on longer, are those new terms enforceable?

If I have made my employer aware of my intent to depart, and they ask me to stay longer than my planned departure date with the promise of additional compensation, is that enforceable on my part? Meaning, if they decide after the fact not to pay me the additional monies, do I have a case for wage claim? What documentation should I obtain to help my case? Is an email from my manager sufficient?

Asked on August 14, 2011 Virginia

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

An agreement to pay you extra compensation to delay your departure date is absolutely enforceable.

It would be enforceable even if it was a purely oral agreement, though as you can imagine, proving the existence and terms of an oral agreement is difficult. The best would be a brief letter or agreement, setting forth the terms in detail, signed by you and by management--i.e. short contract. Failing that, any writing clearly setting forth the terms of the offer (e.g. how much extra, for working how much longer? Any caveats or limitations? Etc.) and clearly sent by someone in authority may well be good enough, though the more explicit and detailed, and the more unequivocally "contract-like" you can make it, the better.


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