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Holiday Bonus in Massachusetts Massachusetts

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  • Holiday Bonus in Massachusetts Massachusetts

    Hi all.
    Massachusetts S-corp., less than 50 employees. The Boss wants to penalize a few of our employees that did not hand in important paperwork during the course of the year by shorting them on their Holiday bonus. Is this legal? Thanks.

  • #2
    It depends on the exact terms of the bonus, but it very likely is legal.

    MA does not require holiday bonuses in the first place (no state does). So unless the bonus agreement is written in such a way as to make it non-discretionary, the boss can do anything he wants with regards to it.
    The above answer, whatever it is, assumes that no legally binding and enforceable contract or CBA says otherwise. If it does, then the terms of the contract or CBA apply.

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    • #3
      Thank you .

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      • #4
        Any time, and welcome back!
        The above answer, whatever it is, assumes that no legally binding and enforceable contract or CBA says otherwise. If it does, then the terms of the contract or CBA apply.

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        • #5
          Just a thought, but this is exactly why you have written compensation plans. Make the bonus formally conditionally on not "*****ing the pooch" or any other restrictions you want. I am not saying that you will lose without one, but the absence of such an agreement turns something easy into something hard.

          When I was in school (fraternity), we had a cook that took three days off without notice. We fired him. He sued us in small claims court. He won full payment for those three days, plus two weeks severance. We were 100% legal, and still lost. Judges can do pretty much anything they want to do, especially small claim court judges. You cannot be too secure on your actions. Having a legal policy and following it does not guarantee everything goes your way, but it makes a big deal if you end up getting an attorney.
          "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away".
          Philip K. **** (1928-1982)

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