Salary change after agreement

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Salary change after agreement

I was making 63k salary in my current company. I was offered another position with a different company making 80k a year. I put in my 2 week notice and one week into the notice, the VP of my current company called and offered me an immediate 4k raise followed by an increase to 76-80k when we go into our new building which requires relocating. I decided to stay. For over 4 months I inquired about the immediate raise and continued to be ignored. Almost 5 months later, I was given a one time raise to 70k based on a promotional basis of more responsibility. They refused back pay and will not go any higher on the salary. In addition, the pay increase knocked my out of being eligible for a performance increase this year. This happened on the last day of the physical year which they were sure to give and make me sign before the end of the day. Is this legal? I regretfully turned down an excellent job to stay with this company. What rights do I have in this matter besides just leaving? I feel I was prayed upon and counted on this for months. I even became behind on bills because I had already accepted a relo from the other company and lost it on the deposit for a house that I ended up not going

to. Is there something that I can do?

Asked on August 10, 2017 under Employment Labor Law, Georgia

Answers:

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

If this action violated the terms of an empoyment agreement, you can bring a breach of contract suit in court. If, however you had no such agreement, then you were an "at will" worker which means that your company could set the conditions of your employment much as it saw fit (absent some form of legally actionable discrimination). Accordingly, it could change your compensation much as it deemed appropriate.

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

Did you have a written contract for a fixed period (e.g. a one-year, two-year, etc.) contract guarantying you the increase, starting effective at a specified time? If you did, you can enforce the terms of that contract in court, via a "breach of contract" lawsuit.
But in the absence of a written contract, your employment would be "employment at will." With employment at will, your employer has 100% control over what to pay you, when and whether (and how much) to give you a raise, etc.; your employer can unilaterally (i.e. regardless of what you want or think) set and change your compensation, and may also freely go back on or renege on non-contractual promises. If you did not have a written contract guarantying you this money, what the employer did is unfair, but legal.


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