Company Reneges on Bonus Promised?

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Skyline D | 10:49 Tue 25th Nov 2008 | Law
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My wife's employers were desperate to finish a month end process last month. They offered the staff double time and a �100 bonus to stay late and provide several hours labour to get it done, which they duly did. This was offered by the line manager, after speaking to higher management (not sure to which level though her immediate superior would be the company accountant though I'm not sure if he was actually there at the time) and several people can verify that the offer was made. Indeed in at least one or two cases the additional �100 was the only reason they inconvenienced themselves.

Needless to say in this month's pay there was no bonus. When they complained they've been told that the company accountant decreed the �100 as excessive after the event but has now agree to pay them �50 each instead (less tax obviously).

I'm fairly sure that legally the company will be obliged to pay the full �100 (the only possible defence presumably being that the offer may have been made by someone with no authority to do so) but I'm guessing it's not worth the hassle to make a big fuss over what amounts to �35 in the hand now. I have suggested to her though that I wouldn't be falling over myself to be co-operative with overtime for the next month end.


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I've since found out that the �100 bonus was authorised by the Financial Director, the company accountant's superior, in the absence of the accountant. However, as stated the accountant later decided this was excessive and decided not to pay it. I do not know if the Financial Director actually knows the accountant didn't pay it.
How many employees where effected?
If there is enough proof of such an offer and emloyees went out of their way to oblige - and they are enough to have an influence in the day to day running of the business - such as in the case of a strike - which I do not suggest!
As a group they could 'afford' an solicitor and you could claim for more than the 50 - inconvinience. Value can be determined = losses the employer will have if affected employees should walk out in normal work hours equal to the amount not paid in work time...
Well planned and represeted will lead to payment...

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