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Old 02-03-2006, 09:03 AM   #1 (permalink)
Psycho
 
Gave 2 week notice. Then they "fired" me.

Ok... so here's the deal... I have been working at the same place for 4 years, and was pretty high up in the company (tech manager, programmer, QA). My boss was a prick...

So, when I got offered another job, I accepted the offer. On January 20th, I went into my boss' office at the end of the day and told him that I was giving my 2 weeks notice. He said, and I quote, "give me your office keys and don't come back on monday". He said he could not trust that I wouldn't delete important source code and components off the server, so I had to not come back.

I am a very trustworthy and nice person, and after 4 years, I couldn't believe he would think I would do something like this.

Well, after I left, he called the other partial owner of the company and then called me on my cell. He said that they were really sad to see me go, but they would go ahead and pay me through the end of the pay period - Jan 31st. He said to keep in touch and wished me luck.

So, my paycheck comes, and it was short $1000. He only paid me through the 20th.

Do I have any way to get the money that he verbally said he'd pay me? Since I was really "terminated", could I also get my pay from unpaid vacation days?

I didn't start my new job until Jan 29th, when I could have started on the 23rd, because I thought I would get my full paycheck, so I'm short on money because of this and a took a few days off before the new job...
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Old 02-03-2006, 09:32 AM   #2 (permalink)
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It's pretty much standard practice for companies, on the day you resign, to turn in your keys, and not be expected to work out the two weeks notice...

At your level, it would also be expected that you be paid for those two weeks, in addition to any unused accrued vacation time, but that might be dependent on the state.

I would call your former boss and ask if you perhaps misunderstood the agreement or check with the human resources department.
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Old 02-03-2006, 09:33 AM   #3 (permalink)
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you have a right to recover that money. verbal promises may be hard to enforce.

try approaching the owner that was agreeable to you first. soft sell it...

and if that doesn't work, think about filing a claim for it.
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Old 02-03-2006, 10:22 AM   #4 (permalink)
Psycho
 
Basically it's a small company (8 people), so no HR dept. The boss is the one that pays people...

How would I go about filing a claim? And will it cost me more in the longrun?

I haven't said anything to him yet since I don't want to say something that ruins my changes of getting the money that was promised to me.
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Old 02-03-2006, 10:25 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Companies that small are virtually free of labor and wage laws. Pay min. wage unless their waitstaff, and that's about it. There is no federal labor or wage law protecting your interest in this case. The only thing you have to press is the verbal agreement.

This is my experience with small companies. I only play a lawyer on the intranets.
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Old 02-03-2006, 10:29 AM   #6 (permalink)
Psycho
 
So all he has to do is say that I was never promised that money, and there's no way of receiving it? ... Nice..
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Old 02-03-2006, 10:29 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Location: Shalimar, FL
Depending on your state and what it says in your policy book if you have one, unused sick days, vacation days and personal days should be paid for. Verbal promises are hard to enforce so you may just have to suck it up but if more than one person knows about the promise of pay then you may be able to make a claim. Also talk to your boss and his bosses first... you went through the right steps in the resignation process... and he said he would pay you. If that doesnt work out check out your states department of labor site.

Like its been said verbal promises are hard to enforce.. so it may not work out. Good luck though!
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Old 02-03-2006, 10:32 AM   #8 (permalink)
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In your letter of resignation, did you put your final date? Did you also include your expectation that you'd be paid for unused sick time and accrued vacation time?
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Old 02-03-2006, 12:20 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Let me get this straight, you were fired because of something you might do??? Sounds like you have grounds to A. collect unemployment (which will at least put some money in your pocket) and B. sue for wrongful termination.
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Old 02-03-2006, 01:21 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cj2112
Let me get this straight, you were fired because of something you might do??? Sounds like you have grounds to A. collect unemployment (which will at least put some money in your pocket) and B. sue for wrongful termination.
Sorry, but I don't think that it works that way. If I were to put in my two weeks notice right now, I would be escorted from the building immediately and they wouldn't have to pay me, especially if they knew that I had signed on with a competitor. Most sales organizations work the same way, and I'm considered an "at will" employee meaning that I'm here because I want to be and my employer wants me to be. My contract even stipulates that if I resign, it's effective immediately regardless of my intentions, unless the employer agrees otherwise. So if I quit to take care of an ailing parent, they'd probably let me work, but if I'm going to hang my shingle outside someone else's door, I'm gone and there's probably a cease-and-desist lawsuit following closely behind me.
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Old 02-03-2006, 03:49 PM   #11 (permalink)
Psycho
 
My boss is the owner of the company.. nobody above him..

I live in Florida, where all the rights are given to the business owners... No termination is wrongful unless it's sex / race related...

There was no resignation letter. I just walked into my boss' office at the end of the day and said 1 sentence... he then told me to not come back.
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Old 02-03-2006, 04:24 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by intecel
There was no resignation letter. I just walked into my boss' office at the end of the day and said 1 sentence... he then told me to not come back.
Take this as valuable career advice... ALWAYS ALWAYS ALWAYS have a letter of resignation... You don't need to put any reasons why you are leaving, just that you are pursuing another opportunity, and your last day of employment will be xxxxx...
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Old 02-04-2006, 02:13 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Location: Shalimar, FL
yeah. in FL as a right to work state, you are fucked.

A letter of resignation counts as formal notice and with ample time means they have to pay you for unused sick days, vacation days and PTO days.

However skipping this step puts them on the good side and you on the bad.

No matter how small the company you always need documentation.
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Old 02-04-2006, 07:18 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by maleficent
Take this as valuable career advice... ALWAYS ALWAYS ALWAYS have a letter of resignation... You don't need to put any reasons why you are leaving, just that you are pursuing another opportunity, and your last day of employment will be xxxxx...

I have always written a letter of resignation even when I quit retail jobs for the very reason of protecting my interests.
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Old 02-04-2006, 06:07 PM   #15 (permalink)
Psycho
 
Interesting.. I will keep this in mind if it ever comes up again. I never knew this..
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Old 02-05-2006, 12:56 AM   #16 (permalink)
Addict
 
Location: Shalimar, FL
just remeber as long as youre in FL its a right to work, they dont have to issue pink slips and you dont have to give 2 weeks notice. Wrongful termination can be easily turned around... trust me as a supervisor Ive heard my bosses talk about every trick in the book to get rid of people without having to pay sick days, vacation days, ptos and without it being wrong... documentation is everything
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always remeber you can choose your friends, but you can't choose your family. But..you CAN choose the insane asylum where you have them all put away!
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Old 02-05-2006, 05:36 AM   #17 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yellowchef
yeah. in FL as a right to work state, you are fucked.

A letter of resignation counts as formal notice and with ample time means they have to pay you for unused sick days, vacation days and PTO days.

However skipping this step puts them on the good side and you on the bad.

No matter how small the company you always need documentation.
Yep...they can't fire you when you've given written notice. That means they can tell you to leave but still pay the notice period and accrued/earned vacation (but not sick) time.

When you leave a company - and it's unexpected - you have made a business decision and all friendships are off. It's now business. And you know where that goes!
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Old 02-05-2006, 06:52 AM   #18 (permalink)
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Location: back home again...
I'm really confused with your use of the term "fired." If you gave them notice of your intention to leave in two weeks and they, in turn, told you that your services were no longer needed as of the end of the present day... you were not fired. The company exercised its right to accept your resignation. The time frame you offered was declined. Although common, a two-week notice is not required, it is a courtesy.

I've always given at least two-weeks' notice when I've changed jobs, buts it has been more on the hope of not "burning bridges" with my former employer than anything else. I wanted things to end amicably just in case I needed letters of recommedation in the future.

If you were to take this case to the labor board or tried to collect unemployment claiming that you were fired, you would lose. You initiated the change in jobs, not them.

It sounds to me that the two owners got together and talked about your final paycheck and a compromise was worked out between the two of them. If one liked you and the other didn't, that scenario makes sense. Remember - these two have to continue to work together after you're gone.

As for whether or not you're entitled to more $$ that was promised verbally... I agree with most of the above posters... tread softly with the owner who made the offer. Whatever the result, you've got to know now that changing jobs does not come without a price... literally and figuratively.
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Old 02-05-2006, 09:24 AM   #19 (permalink)
Psycho
 
Thanks for all the good advice. I'm going to send him a quick email asking if he purposely paid me through the 21st, or if it was a mistake on the payroll company's part.. Then I'll drop it all, along with all contact with my prior boss.
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Old 02-06-2006, 11:18 AM   #20 (permalink)
 
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I've worked at the same company for 28 years. If I gave my 2 weeks notice tomorrow, an armed guard would greet me at my manager's office, take me to my desk and watch while I collected my personal things. One of my peers would be immediately pressed to remove my access to everything before I was escorted out.

No hard feelings, I literally "hold the keys" to many major corporate and government networks. I would expect to get paid for my 2 weeks, but I wouldn't depend on it.

Sending a note seems reasonable, dropping it regardless of the response seems reasonable, as well.
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Old 02-06-2006, 01:26 PM   #21 (permalink)
 
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Location: Waterloo, Ontario
Quote:
Originally Posted by intecel
On January 20th, I went into my boss' office at the end of the day and told him that I was giving my 2 weeks notice. He said, and I quote, "give me your office keys and don't come back on monday". He said he could not trust that I wouldn't delete important source code and components off the server, so I had to not come back.

I am a very trustworthy and nice person, and after 4 years, I couldn't believe he would think I would do something like this.
Regardless of the type of person you are, this attitude makes no sense. Since you actively resigned, you obviously knew, before hand, that you were leaving and could have sabotaged the company then, before your resignation.

Having said that, it's certainly not unusual for companies to let resigned persons take a leave of absence during their resignation period. The idea behind that, I think, is that there's no motivation for you to work (well or at all) during that period so why make you come in? I mean, what are they going to do, fire you? They would only make you come in if what you do is timely (you interact with customers, everyday, who will miss you). For a lot of jobs (like mine, a computer programmer), a two week absence won't be noticed...
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Old 02-10-2006, 10:50 AM   #22 (permalink)
Psycho
 
My position was delphi programming (reports and small apps), Sole QA person for the company, Tech manager, Shipping.

I would have figured they would have wanted me to stick around to train the others on what I did. Everyone there are still clueless how to do any of my old work because they didn't give me time to train them before I got out.

I've decided to completely let the whole situation go... I'm not worried about the money, I've just lost an aquaintance (sp?) through all this.
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