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Company Owes Me Money

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  • Company Owes Me Money

    Massachusetts

    I have been working with a company for a year and a half, and the company has been struggling financially since the beginning. All of the employees are owed money from last year and this year's wages. In an attempt to better validate how much they owe me, I wanted my CEO to sign a document which listed the checks and amount that I received in 2013, and how much was due to me. I sent this to him, and both of us signed 2 printed copies. What I did not realize was that without my knowledge or approval, he added a clause next to the total amount owed which stated "To be paid at closing of series B > $3.0M" which means that I will get this money once the company finishes this round of financing and gets more than 3M (I know, I know, I should have read it all over again... it was just literally the same exact form except that one small line added in). As soon as I noticed I talked with him to get him to change it because I am not comfortable with that (I have doubts the company will ever get this financing), and he denied my requests. My questions are:

    1. Even though the paper is signed, is it even legal? Legally I am entitled to receive the salary that was in my initial contract, and I did not.

    2. Would this paper become void if the company went bankrupt? If I left and found a new job?

    3. If I filed a wage complaint form with the attorney general, would I be able to include this amount in the complaint? Or would I only be able to include the money I am owed from 2014, which is not listed on the signed paper?

  • #2
    Re: Company Owes Me Money

    I wish to inform you that it is the terms and conditions as stated in the employment contract which will have jurisdiction in this matter unless they are modified by agreement of both parties in writing. Further, after signing the new letter the amount owed is not in dispute. It is only the timing at which the amount owed to you is to be paid which is in dispute. You may contact the Fair Labor Hotline and seek guidance. You may file the Non-Payment of Wage and Workplace Complaint Form with the Attorney General.

    AFF

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Company Owes Me Money

      Thanks for your reply. Like I said before, I don't think the company will ever receive this supposed funding. I am planning on leaving the company soon and will file the complaint. If I file for the total wages I am owed from last year (the amount of the sheet) and this year, do you think I will receive the full amount or only the amount from this year?

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Company Owes Me Money

        Originally posted by NeedAdviceAsap View Post
        Thanks for your reply. Like I said before, I don't think the company will ever receive this supposed funding. I am planning on leaving the company soon and will file the complaint. If I file for the total wages I am owed from last year (the amount of the sheet) and this year, do you think I will receive the full amount or only the amount from this year?
        Payment of Wages in Massachusetts is governed by Title 21, Chapter 149, Section 148, which states in part:

        Section 148. Every person having employees in his service shall pay weekly or bi-weekly each such employee the wages earned by him to within six days of the termination of the pay period during which the wages were earned if employed for five or six days in a calendar week, or to within seven days of the termination of the pay period during which the wages were earned if such employee is employed seven days in a calendar week... every mechanic, workman and laborer employed by it or them, and every person employed in any other capacity by it or them in any penal or charitable institution, and every county and city shall so pay every employee engaged in its business the wages or salary earned by him, unless such mechanic, workman, laborer or employee requests in writing to be paid in a different manner; ...........[separate provisions for public and quasi public employees such as railroad workers] ........; and provided, further, that employees engaged in a bona fide executive, administrative or professional capacity as determined by the attorney general and employees whose salaries are regularly paid on a weekly basis or at a weekly rate for a work week of substantially the same number of hours from week to week may be paid bi-weekly or semi-monthly ..



        ]No person shall by a special contract with an employee or by any other means exempt himself from this section or from section one hundred and fifty. The president and treasurer of a corporation and any officers or agents having the management of such corporation shall be deemed to be the employers of the employees of the corporation within the meaning of this section. Every public officer whose duty it is to pay money, approve, audit or verify pay rolls, or perform any other official act relative to payment of any public employees, shall be deemed to be an employer of such employees, and shall be responsible under this section for any failure to perform his official duty relative to the payment of their wages or salaries, unless he is prevented from performing the same through no fault on his part.

        An employer paying his employees on a weekly basis on July first, nineteen hundred and ninety-two shall, prior to paying said employees on a bi-weekly basis, provide each employee with written notice of such change at least ninety days in advance of the first such bi-weekly paycheck.

        Whoever violates this section shall be punished or shall be subject to a civil citation or order as provided in section 27C."



        The chapter is quite lengthy but in essence your employer may not make any contract exempting the company from paying timely as the law requires. And they subject themselves to penalties for doing so, not paying timely. Althouh one has a private right of action and triple damages may be awarded, the Attorney General's Office enforces the law.


        Their number to call is:

        (617) 727-3465

        One may also file a complaint online at the Masschusetts Attorney General's web site.

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Company Owes Me Money

          Originally posted by NeedAdviceAsap View Post
          Thanks for your reply. Like I said before, I don't think the company will ever receive this supposed funding. I am planning on leaving the company soon and will file the complaint. If I file for the total wages I am owed from last year (the amount of the sheet) and this year, do you think I will receive the full amount or only the amount from this year?
          You and the other employees who were not paid timely may be entitled to triple damages.

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Company Owes Me Money

            Thank you, very helpful!

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Company Owes Me Money

              Originally posted by NeedAdviceAsap View Post
              Thank you, very helpful!
              Every state save 2, Florida and Georgia have deadlines when employees must be paid -- some with penalties. Massachusetts has one of the more stringent against employers who do not pay timely. California is another with hefty penalties, too.

              Comment


              • #8
                I face the same in Calif, this is gear and helpful!!
                I knew this couldnt possibly be legal. What they were doing at my firm.

                Comment

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