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I worked for a company before leaving them in Mid March.

 

Normally they pay a bonus but they said they wouldn't pay me as I left before the end of the quarter.

 

They state the bonus is "discretionary" which appears to mean we don't pay it if we don't want to.

 

My contract states nothing about the bonus except where it mentions "Termination of employment", where the company terminates your employment you will not recieve a bonus. this doesnt make sense becoause if they terminate your employment on any day except the last day of a quarter based on their explanation you wouldn't get a bonus.

 

Do I have any rights? I have written to them escalating until my last email was to the MD which has not been replied to.

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the terms in the contract will in many cases be unfair and thus you will be entitled to the bonus and there is case law on this.

However, it is not a simple matter to resolve as it will have to take into account what the contract says and what the normal practice and expectations are for the bonus scheme.

For example, Jhn Lewis pays out to anyone employed there on the relevant date so leave the day before and you lose out becasue it is a partnership and you would no longer be a partner.

No schemes that withold bonuses until a certain time of the year MAY have to pay out but if your bonus is for the quarter that your resignation fell in then probably not. If it was for say Oct-Dec then you will ahve fulfilled the requirements of a qualifying period regardless of the contract saying no bonus and would more than likely be successful in a claim to recover such monies. A scheme that has been running for soem time would be part of yoru contract even if there is nothing specific included in your paperwork as it becomes implied as part of the conditions you agreed to when joining to co and staying there.

 

i know this doesnt give you a definite answer but hopefully makes it a little easier to see how your situation may work out

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Bonuses are generally paid to incentivise staff to do well in the future.

 

They have, therefore, no reason to pay you it.


Never assume anyone on the internet is who they say they are. Only rely on advice from insured professionals you have paid for!

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13 hours ago, afcwben said:

...

 

They state the bonus is "discretionary" which appears to mean we don't pay it if we don't want to.

 

...

 

I would say that is exactly what "discretionary" means.

 

12 hours ago, ericsbrother said:

the terms in the contract will in many cases be unfair and thus you will be entitled to the bonus and there is case law on this.

...

 

Is that the case?  Surely nearly all bonus schemes are discretionary unless explicitly stated otherwise in the employment contract?  Does "fairness" come into it?

 

I agree with emmzi - there's no advantage to the employer in paying it and I can't see the OP forcing them to do so.

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thank you to all who have replied, I was fortunate enough to start a new job on the 30th March so I will take that as a blessing in itself

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Good luck with the new job!  Difficult times...

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