What are my rights if I have a relocation policy that has repayment terms if I leave on my own but I felt that I had to leave before I was fired?

It also states in the policy who I report, however my employer let them go but this person was the reason that I came to the company. Then after that, behind the scenes, they were looking for my replacement without letting me know of course. As a result, I elected to leave when I found a job and before they replaced me. So do I owe the full amount of relocation costs or do I have an argument that they broke the contract first and created a hostile environment for me to work in?

Asked on February 8, 2016 under Employment Labor Law, Ohio

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

No, you owe the full amount because you left before you were fired or terminated. It doesn't matter if you feel you had the best reasons in the world for doing this: you could have forced the company to go ahead and terminate you (if they were going to) by simply staying until they did. You had the right to stay until terminated. By jumping the gun and leaving under your own power, you are subject to the provisions requiring repayment. It also doesn't matter if the workplace was hostile--workplaces *may* be hostile, even toxic (many are) and that is legal; the employer is under no obligation to provide a non-hostile workplace.


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