If I am an independent sales rep/agent, if I do not hit certain yearly quotas, can company lower my commissions as set forth in agent contract.

The fact whether I am an agent or employee is a dicey one. That say I am an
independent agent, but get treated like an employee in many respect. Required
to do things in a certain way, quotas to meet, not allowed to sell any type of
related service we provide for anyone but them, and a couple other things. They
do not ‘require’ I attend sales meetings but…… They do not pay for these things
but it is ‘highly’ recommended to attend. We are told how to sell and have to
use certain guidelines set forth by them. I could go on but to me, and others, we
are agents but treated like employees when it suits their needs.

Asked on April 3, 2018 under Employment Labor Law, Texas

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 2 years ago | Contributor

If you have a contract for a set or defined time (like a one-year contract), they cannot lower or change commissions until the contract has expired (unless the terms of the contract themselves allow the commission to be changed while the contract is still in effect). After the current contract expires, they can put forward a different commission, and it's your choice whether to keep working with them or not.
If the agreement is not for a set time period, it can be changed on notice at will *going forward*--that is, from the moment you are notified of the change onward. But any sales made prior to notice of the change must be paid at the then-in-effect commission rate: retroactive changes for work done/sales made are not legal.


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