In many fields, it’s common for an employer to offer employees compensation beyond their hourly or salaried rate. Many employees expect and rely on this bonus. If your employer decides not to pay a bonus this year, and you were counting on receiving this money, do you have any recourse? The answer is that it depends.

In some companies, the owner or management may decide to give employees extra money at the end of the year as a holiday gift. Typically, there is no contract that obligates the company to give this; they do it as a way to thank their employees for their service. In this situation, unfortunately, there is no recourse if the company decides to skip bonuses.

In other companies, employees may have bonuses written into their employment contracts. For example, the contract could promise to pay a bonus if the company meets specified sales targets or milestones. If the bonus is written into the contract, and you met the conditions for the bonus to be paid, then the company may be obliged to pay the bonus.

The first step to recovering your unpaid bonus is to meet with an attorney to review your contract. If you have a formal, written contract, that will provide strong evidence for your case. In Florida, oral contracts are legally valid, but are difficult to prove. Your attorney will likely contact your employer and threaten to sue for breach of contract. Most employers want to avoid the expense and hassle of a lawsuit, so they will often pay the bonus at this point. This is the fastest route to secure your bonus. If the employer won’t pay, though, your attorney will likely follow through and file suit against them. If you file suit and win, your employer will have to pay your bonus and possibly accrued interest and attorney’s fees as well.

Another option in some cases is to sue the employer for civil theft. These cases are much more difficult to prove and win because your attorney will need to show that the employer acted with malicious and criminal intent when it withheld your bonus.

Some employees are scared to take legal action against their employer because they fear their employer will fire them if they do so. It’s illegal for a company to retaliate against an employee who is exercising their legal rights to secure their bonus. If this is a concern for you, discuss it with your attorney. They will advise you how to best proceed.

If your employer has denied paying your bonus, contact Rader Law. We will listen to the details of your case and advise you on the best legal approach to compel your employer to pay you the funds that they owe you. We will fight for you to receive justice.

Rader Law Group, LLC

With decades and decades combined experience, the attorneys at Rader Law Group understand the meaning of Justice. Our one and only mission is to get each client the justice he or she deserves; our team of attorneys never back down when we know our client is right.

We offer our clients the compassion and guidance they need as they work through trying times in their lives. The balance of working relentlessly for our clients combined with our caring approach has helped us achieve a fantastic record of success with our clients. We get our clients the justice they deserve.

At Rader Law Group, You matter. Your justice matters. Your Justice Starts Here. 954-913-2273.