Opinions on quitting a job and receiving due pay (vacation, personal days, etc.)

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by iKwick7, Jan 4, 2007.

  1. iKwick7 macrumors 65816

    iKwick7

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2004
    Location:
    The Wood of Spots, NJ
    #1
    I am wondering everyone's opinion on this matter.

    I currently work for a small architecture office and I have been there since 2002. I worked the first few years both parttime (during college) and fulltime (when on break). I'd say 2002 through 2004 had me work 4 or 5 full time months when I wasn't at school (winter, summer breaks) and a day or 2 a week when at school. 2005 I'd say I worked 3 days a week (low class load) and full time for a few months, and September 2005 I signed on for full time (benefits, vacation, personal days, etc.).

    Anyways, I feel I need to move on- the commute is waaaay too far and I just feel like I am not going anywhere there, so I found a new job. Best part, new job is 10 blocks from my apartment, as opposed to the 40+ miles each way I was driving previously.

    I gave notice that I would be leaving at the very end of last year- friday the 29th. Quite politely (and professionally, I might add) I brought up that I had found a job extremely close to home and that I would soon be leaving. Fair enough, they understood that it made sense for me.

    The other day I sit down with my 2 bosses and say that we should talk about when my last day would be. I came up with Friday January 19th- an solid 3 weeks after I initially broke news I would be leaving. I figured that would be a nice gesture, as opposed to the standard 2 weeks (or 1 week notice that someone gave last year when they quit). I then (extremely politely) asked how we would work out my vacation pay- I get one week vacation paid each year, plus 5 personal days. Then things took a turn.

    Long story short, the gist of the conversation is that they believe vacation and sick/personal days are an earned bonus, if you will- not a right that I am due or deserve. B.S. I politely said that I didn't see it that way, that as long as one still has unused time, they are due pay for it. They weren't changing their stance (and had quite a bit of an attitude about it). I left it at that, for the time being. Tomorrow (or tday, I should say now) I am going to talk with them more about this.

    So what does everyone think? Everyone that I talked to agreed that I am due BOTH a full week's vacation pay AND 5 days personal day pay. That is my right, part of something my bosses and I both agreed to before I started full time. Case in point- a friend of mine recently left his job, one he had been at only for about a year or 2. He didn't take his vacation, they just payed him for it when he left.

    I kind of felt this might happen. I could very easily have taken vacation the first week of the year, came back and said I quite or given my 2 weeks- but I am not like that. I thought I would give them the benefit of the doubt and give them some time. As far as I am concerned, I still have 2 more weeks to go. I still am an emnployee there.. If they are going to refuse to give me what I am owed, what's to stop me from getting "sick" or having "personal issues" for 5 days straight before I leave? That's not my style, but what's to stop me?

    It's late and I'm sleepy, so if I don't respond to any repsonses immediately, I am still grateful for everyone's opinions- I just fell asleep.

    Also- in 5 years, I have NEVER taken a sick day or called out- I always gave 2 weeks notice or more for any day off. Just something to think about.

    :)
     
  2. garybUK Guest

    garybUK

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2002
    #2
    Sorry to say this but....

    If you Resign from a post then the company owe you jack, you are choosing to walk away, what you would normally do is say: the notice period will be 3 weeks, however i am owed 1 week vacation time, thereofe i will work any of the 2 weeks the company needs me most.

    If you are made redundant from a post, then it's different, the company should re-imburse you.

    However, it might work differently over there..
     
  3. MultiM macrumors 6502

    MultiM

    Joined:
    May 9, 2006
    Location:
    TO. I've moved!
    #3
    What is the law where you are? 5 'personal' days is equal to a week of holidays. When does the new job start? Don't 'discuss' when your last day is, tell them. This is your decision to make. The company will keep you on for as long as you let them. Just because you have personal and professional integrity does NOT mean you work for people who do. If you miss out on a bonus or week's pay, it sounds like it is worth the price to get out. If you are entitled to holdays and they won't pay up, talk to a lawyer (or threaten to). Nobody wants to go through that sort of nonsense for a few hundred bucks. Or, just take the holiday and when you get back, make that your last day. Good luck!
     
  4. Markleshark macrumors 603

    Markleshark

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2006
    Location:
    Carlisle, Up Norf!
    #4
    Sounds like they are right.

    The more hours I work, the more holidays and sick days I get paid for, I can still take them, but I don't get paid.

    Personally, I think its a good system. But in your case, looks as if they don't want to give you anything (Which is I think totally acceptable as far as the law is concerned) and I guess it just sucks, but its something you'll have to get over im afraid. Not trying to be harsh, but thats life. :(

    I understand that this is made worse by the fact you've done your best to help them and it seems as if they've done jack **** for you, but at the end of the day they are your employers and you are their employee, not their mate, this is business and their money. Sucks I know, but what can you do?...
     
  5. ziwi macrumors 65816

    ziwi

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2004
    Location:
    Right back where I started...
    #5
    It is the beginning of the year and even though I would be paid for unused vacation if I quit - it still has to accrue over time...so if you were due 12 days of vacation then you would most likely accrue 1 vacation day per month. If you took a week off in January you would owe them for 4 days of the 5 you took - that is the way it works in most places.


    If you resign the nset a date and go and that is it. Move on but do not burn bridges for this non-reason...
     
  6. heehee macrumors 68020

    heehee

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2006
    Location:
    Same country as Santa Claus
    #6
    I don't think they are obligated to pay you for your unused vacations. You can take time off, but they don't HAVE to pay you for your unused vacation.
     
  7. MultiM macrumors 6502

    MultiM

    Joined:
    May 9, 2006
    Location:
    TO. I've moved!
    #7
    I'm not sure about the labour laws where you are, but in Canada a company is obligated to pay accrued holiday pay if an employee leaves. 'Bonus' days like sick or personal days are just that: a bonus, and is at the discretion of the company.
     
  8. iKwick7 thread starter macrumors 65816

    iKwick7

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2004
    Location:
    The Wood of Spots, NJ
    #8
    Well before I agreed to come on full time, we discussed what my benefits would be and whatnot. I have a piece of paper that says what I will get paid, what my vacation/personal days are, etc.- no where on there does it say anything is accrued over time. It specifically states 5 days vacation and 5 days personal, per year.

    My point is this. I could have very simply requested, later last year, the first week of this year off for paid vacation. I could then have taken a vacation this week and then returned to work next monday and said "I quit." I would have gotten paid for that week.

    I see what you are saying, but by that logic then the vacation I took last year would have been accrued from the year before- and by that logic then it has been 6 months since that, so I would be owed at least 6 days pay.

    I am going to talk more with them today, we'll see what happens.
     
  9. wordmunger macrumors 603

    wordmunger

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2003
    Location:
    North Carolina
    #9
    Exactly. You are being forthright and honest with them and they are being a**holes. I can't believe how many people are suggesting you shouldn't be paid for earned vacation and personal days.

    Unfortunately you don't have much of a bargaining position at this point, so unless you want to take legal action, you probably just need to eat that extra pay and move on. Don't burn any bridges -- you may need their recommendation sometime down the road.
     
  10. zelmo macrumors 603

    zelmo

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2004
    Location:
    Mac since 7.5
    #10
    Let me get this straight - you put in 3 weeks notice on the last work day of calendar year 2006. At the start of 2007 you get a week each of vacation and personal leave to use in 2007. If the company has no specific personnel policy that covers this type of issue, then I think you are entitled to a pro-rated portion [3/52] of those 10 days. That's a shade over 4.5 hours of pay, IMMIC.

    EDIT: If you are saying you have vacation time you were awarded in 2006 that you never used, then I think you are owed all of that, again providing that the company has no written policy stating otherwise.
     
  11. D0ct0rteeth macrumors 65816

    D0ct0rteeth

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2002
    Location:
    Franklin, TN
    #11
    As an employer, and an employee - I understand your frustration.

    But you really are at their mercy, and there is nothing you can do.

    You are employed purely at their whim, they are providing you a job - and they can either pay you for your unused vacation days, or they can treat them as unused/unredemed - and they just "evaporate" when you leave.

    Either view is ethical and completely legal, You handled it exactly as I would recommend and I would strongly recommend that today, and for the rest of your time there you act very classy, very respectful, and you keep in mind that the best thing for you is to keep these relationships and references in mind.

    A few hundred dollars in the grand sceme of things, wont change your life - and you really don't have any possibility of forcing them to forcing them to pay you that, The best thing you can do is keep working hard and ethically and just have a very calm and respectful conversation with them - and hope that they change their mind.

    Good luck. It sucks - but it happens, and your leaving there anyway for a better place. Take the high road. :)
     
  12. dornoforpyros macrumors 68040

    dornoforpyros

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2004
    Location:
    Calgary, AB
    #12
    Ditto, I had a dispute with a former employer over back pay and ended up filing a complaint with the labour board (as did many coworkers of mine) and when we filed we had to claim all vacation pay as required by law.

    So I would check your local labour board website and find out what the law says and then forward your employer a letter or e-mail with your findings as well as links & copies of the law as written. Also inform them that if they choose to ignore/refuse your request you will be forced to file a complaint. Keep everything in writing because the more paper work you bring to the labour board the better.

    Bt as I said my experience was in Canada so I'm only going with Alberta's labour laws. But in my experience the labour board is there to you the employee not the employer.
     
  13. Dros macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2003
  14. iKwick7 thread starter macrumors 65816

    iKwick7

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2004
    Location:
    The Wood of Spots, NJ
    #14
    I see your point, but there is also this point as well:



    I haven't quit, yet- I have just committed to leaving eventually. I still am an employee. I still have healthcare, benefits, what have you. Why can't I, as a current employee, say "hey, I'd like my vacation in 2 weeks?" If I really, really get sick tomorrow, I am still employed here and would get payed for it.
     
  15. zelmo macrumors 603

    zelmo

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2004
    Location:
    Mac since 7.5
    #15
    You can certainly do that, but whether or not you'd really get paid for the time depends on their policy. In our case, employees accrue vacation and personal leave weekly throughout the calendar year, although we make the entire years' accrual available to them on January 1. If you accrue at a rate of three weeks a year, take all your time by February, then quit effective April 1, you've used 52 weeks of accrued time in just 13 weeks. Our policy states that you owe the company for the 39 weeks worth of accrual you used but will never earn since you will no longer be employed. We would deduct those hours from your final paycheck.

    Principals are well and good, but a clean employment history and a good reference have a value, too. Won't matter whether you are justified or correct if all they remember when someone calls for a reference is the stink you made on your way out the door.
     
  16. iKwick7 thread starter macrumors 65816

    iKwick7

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2004
    Location:
    The Wood of Spots, NJ
    #16
    That's the thing- I won't make a stink- I just feel I am being wronged here, especially since I could have been the guy that takes a vacation the first week of the year, comes back, and then gives his 2 weeks.

    I'll see what happens in a couple hours.
     
  17. calculus Guest

    calculus

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2005
    #17
    Just to echo what some people have been saying already it is usually the case that if you have a holiday entitlement of, say twelve days for the year you have that entitlement on a pro rata basis (i.e. one day for each month worked). In your example you would then need to pay back your company for (most of ) the week that you took. On the other hand if you had worked ten months of the year without holiday you would be able to leave ten days before the end of your notice period.
     
  18. failsafe1 macrumors 6502a

    failsafe1

    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2003
    #18
    Each company has different policies towards benefits. In the private sector some may see unused vacation has something you never loose but more would see it has a benefit you have to use to benefit from. I can only keep so much vacation time where I work and if I have too much it turns into sick time at the end of the year. I never take sick days so am I being punished? No it is simply the policy where I work. If I stick around long enough I can use that sick time to take earlier retirement. I have worked places where you take it or loose it. Most conversations I have had with peers say this is the policy take it or loose it. I happen to get much more time each month than most of my friends so I have a good situation. A benefit does not translate into a right. You can benefit from vacation days but that may not mean you have the right for equal value if you don't use them. I have friends who take forced vacation every year because their employer shuts down for a week and they have no say in this. Do they feel they should get to take a week when they want? Maybe but they can't. There should be a manual explaining benefits and such. If there is then you are bound by that. If there is no written policy you may be able to ask. Sounds like you asked and were told no so I think that you move on. A few days should not make a huge difference. Sounds like the 10 blocks commute will more than compensate the 40 mile commute. First day on the new job ask for the company manual and then plan a nice vacation when you have accrued the days. Congrats on the new job.
     
  19. iKwick7 thread starter macrumors 65816

    iKwick7

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2004
    Location:
    The Wood of Spots, NJ
    #19
    Just a heads up- they didn't budge, not that I really pressed the matter. We had a nice talk and they are going with the whole perecnt-of-the-year acrued days thing- so yeah, I am going to get like 5 hours paids extra when I leave. :) Good talk though- we even joked around quite a bit afterwards, as usual, so everything's good and whatnot.

    I appreciate everyone's opinion on the matter. I'm not upset or anything- I don't hold grudges and it takes a lot to piss me off, but I thought it would have been nice/the right thing to do to still pay me for the vacation and/or sick days- or at least something. Whatever, life goes on.

    Most important thing- we are going to sit down next week to sign some papers that I need to eventual get my license (you have to work at least 3 years after the 5+ years of college to get your license- I know, I should have been a doctor instead!), so all is good.

    Thanks again!
     

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