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taratill
taratill, Solicitor
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 6339
Experience:  15 years experience of advising on employment law matters
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Ben I work in banking and my bonus is due to be awarded on the 30 September. This is

Resolved Question:

Hi Ben
I work in banking and my bonus is due to be awarded on the 30 September. This is for the fiscal year of 2014 ending April. I just received the news today (2 days) before, that they will impose a 12 months claw back clause (expiring June 2016) on my bonus. This is 2 days before it is being paid out.
This have been imposed to 2 of my other colleagues at the same level/rank. We have not signed anything at the moment, but believe that an addendum will be drafted to expect us to repay this bonus in full if I resign within the 12 months of the payment date. This is unprecedented as I am only a analyst with 2 year of experience. No other competitors are enforcing this to juniors and claw backs are usually something that happens at the senior level.
What can we do? Please advise.
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Employment Law
Expert:  Remus2004 replied 2 years ago.
Hi
Thank you for your question. My name is ***** ***** I will try to help with this.
I think Ben is off right now but I'll send him a message about this for you. He might come back in the morning now.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Relist: Other.
Did not answer the question at all.
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 2 years ago.
Hello, my name is***** am a solicitor on this site and it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. How long have you worked there for?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

I have been there for 2.5 years.

My other 2 colleagues have been there for 1+ years.

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 2 years ago.
Thank you for your response. I will review the relevant information and will get back to you as soon as possible. Please do not respond to this message as it will just push your question to the back of the queue and you may experience unnecessary delays. Thank you
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Relist: Other.
I'm not satisfied with this above answer. It does not answer the question.
Expert:  taratill replied 2 years ago.
Hello I am happy to help you today. Has the employer said what would happen if you fail to sign the clawback and is the bonus itself contractual, i.e. a term of your original contract?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

We have not signed anything as of yet, but are expecting they would draft a legal document and force us to sign if not the funds will not be released/paid.

Expert:  taratill replied 2 years ago.
Ok thanks have you always been paid the bonus before and does it form part of your employment contract?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

I have paid bonus before with no such terms.

Expert:  taratill replied 2 years ago.
Ok in that case what they are suggesting can be deemed to amount to a change in terms and conditions. They are not entitled to unilaterally vary your terms and conditions which is what they are purporting to do.
You can raise a grievance about the proposed change in terms citing the fact that it is not in line with industry standards and that it is unfair as it is in respect of a period that you will be required to remain in employment for a period of time. If you refuse to sign it and they refuse to pay then, if you have always been paid it in the past, you can claim that the failure to pay amounts to an unlawful deduction from wages.
Ultimately if the employer wants to introduce this going forward then the reality is that there will not be much you can do about it, they can make it a term of your employment that the clawback applies and you can either accept the situation after notice is given of a change in terms and conditions or you could leave at the end of the notice and try your hand at an unfair dismissal claim.
You should note however that an employer is entitled to change terms and conditions from time to time.
If you have any further questions about this please do ask. If I have answered your question I would be grateful if you would take the time to rate my answer. Thank you and all the best.
taratill, Solicitor
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 6339
Experience: 15 years experience of advising on employment law matters
taratill and other Employment Law Specialists are ready to help you
Expert:  taratill replied 2 years ago.
Hello is there anything further you would like to know about this as I can see you have not yet rated my answer?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

I was told that if I need to sign the document if not the funds will not be processed. The document states that this is the condition of the payment of the Bonus is that I remain employed up to 30 June 2016. At any time before the date, a notice of termination of employment for any reason, I will be required to and shall repay on demand the full gross amount of the Bonus.

This is targeted only at the Analyst 3 level.

I just want to know can this be enforced? I will owe them more as the after-tax amount is a lot less than this.

Expert:  taratill replied 2 years ago.
Hi if you sign the agreement then it will be legally binding and they will have the ability to reclaim bonus. It seems very unfair that they seek to reclaim the gross amount. I would raise a grievance.
If they are only targetting one level that potentially the decision is indirectly discriminatory. This is particularly the case if this level of employee tends to be younger or older than the rest of the workforce as it could potentially amount to indirect age discrimination.
You should definitely raise a grievance on the basis that it amounts to a change in terms and conditions and a failure to pay (if you don't sign) will amount to a unilateral variation of terms.
please do let me know if you have any further questions.