If I moved out of state and my employer promised in writing to pay my relocation costs, what can I do if now they are backpedaling?

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If I moved out of state and my employer promised in writing to pay my relocation costs, what can I do if now they are backpedaling?

The amount was more than their normal policy to cover but they agreed to do so. The amount is around 13K. What legal options do I have? Is there any limitation on the time that I can go to the court?

Asked on January 28, 2016 under Employment Labor Law, Texas

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

If you have a written agreement from them, depending on exactly what it says, you may be able to sue for breach of contract (much depends on exactly what the writing says). And/or you may able to sue under the theory of "promissory estoppel," if you only relocated due to their promise--when party A makes a promise to party B to do something to B's detriment (like relocate), knowing B would have to do that detrimental thing, and B does that thing, and it was reasonable for B to rely on A's promise, the law will often force A to honor it's promise. Therfore, you have two possible bases to sue your employer for the money. (Of course, suing an employer is a drastic step, and you need to think carefully about your career and work options--they may terminate you, after all) before doing this, or else wait until you have a different job.
In your state, you should have up to four years from when they breached their contract to sue, though it's never advisable to wait until the last minute, in case there's some last moment delays or problems.


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