Greetings. My company has an annual company-wide team bonus that all of the FTEs that have been with the company one year or more receive. The team bonus needs to be approved by the board first. I did not receive my bonus as everyone else did and no notice was given to me as to that fact. Surprised, I contacted HR via email and was told that the bonus can be taken away if you receive a score of 2.0 or lower out of 5.0 on your annual review which I did. HR also stated in the email that this is not a publicized fact except in the HR Manual. So that specific metric is not a published part of the equation and is not mentioned during our company-wide address. During this address we find out how the company performed against the goals set for the year and whether the company will receive the bonus. We achieved the goals and the bonus was distributed company-wide. What can I do at this point? Now I have to get a hardship withdrawal from my 401K so I am losing money and interest on the money I had to withdraw. What can I do at this point to get my bonus? Thank you for your time and prompt response to my inquiry.
1 Answer from Attorneys
You can have a lawyer look at the documents you were provided and agreed to regarding the bonus to determine whether it is a contractual obligation of the company, or is just an expectation but not a promise. If it is contractual, and you are in MD, it may entitle you to extra damages under the wage payment law, so that may at a minimum give them an incentive to settle and pay. (But with a 2.0 out of 5.0, you may have bigger things to worry about, like keeping your job. They can't fire you for asserting your rights but they can fire you for poor performance).
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