Does my employer owe me my commission?

UPDATED: Oct 2, 2022

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Does my employer owe me my commission?

I quit from my sales and project management position at the end of September. I gave them my 2 week notice and they said they didn’t need it and to just gather my stuff and go. My sales commissions from September should have been paid to me in October but I was never paid. They state it is because I was no longer there to manage my projects so they split my commission between the other 2 salesmen. However, this doesn’t seem right to me; I still sold those jobs and the company did not loose any money with me quitting plus I was not allowed to stay and manage my projects they told me to just leave. I was not an hourly employee; I was salary and that salary was based on my sales. According to state labor law for commission employees, they are in the wrong and should have paid me as I never signed a sales contract with them. I just want to make sure I’m understanding the labor laws correctly.

Asked on November 1, 2019 under Employment Labor Law, Utah


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

First, two-week notice is a tradition, not a legal right or obligation, so they are free to not honor it (and you would have been free to quit without any notice). 
They have to pay your commission for all sales you made prior to you quitting under the same terms or conditions as they paid all other commissions. If commissions are paid after the sales are made without there being any requirement in the past that they salesperson manage the project after the sale, they have to pay it to you: if they don't, you could sue for "breach of contract," or violation of the agreement (whether written or oral) under which you worked and made the sales.
On the other hand, if it was understood, either from something in writing or from past practice, that commission was not earned until the project was complete and so salesperson had to manage the project to earn it, then they would be justified in not paying you, since in that case, that was the arrangement or terms under which you worked.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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