Do I have legal recourse?

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Do I have legal recourse?

I was denied bonus because I made more than my
team mates and was receiving tuition assistance.
Not due to performance. I left the company during a
staff reduction due to being told that there was no
room for advancement. Now they want that tuition
assistance paid back. I also worked through most
lunches as well as while on vacation and
hospitalization. Over 40 hours a week for nearly 5′
years. I was a salaried employee. Do I have any
legal recourse? Worked at Comerica bank in
Michigan.

Asked on May 6, 2017 under Employment Labor Law, Michigan

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

You only have to repay the tuition assistance IF there was an agreement between you and the employer--which agreement was made before you accepted the assistance--that if you left the company under certain circumstances, you would repay it: if so, and the circumstances covered by the agreement occured, then you'd have to repay the money. But if you did not agree to repay it, you don't have to: you cannot be forced to repay without an agreement for repayment. (Such repayment agreements are enforceable and common, but if your company did not think to have you sign one ahead of time, that is their problem, not yours.) But if there was a repayment agreement, then if under its terms you have to repay in this situation, you have to pay; if you don't, they could successfully sue you.
 


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