I was gainfully employed somewhere when I got an offer of another job so I resigned to join the new place. A week later my appointment was terminated and I was to be paid one month salary in lieu and I’m yet to get paid, called the company and all I’m getting is stories.
I believe that is a breach of contract and I don’t know what to do.
From what you have explained it would appear that there are at least 2 issues involved:
- Whether your termination was lawful
- How to demand for payment of your one month in lieu of notice salary.
On the first issue, it would depend on the terms of your employment contract, and the clauses which deal with termination of employment. We would suggest that you get a qualified lawyer to review your employment contract terms to see whether you have a potential cause of action.
On the second issue, you are quite right to demand your salary which is due. You have taken the first step by contacting them. In recovering what is owed to you, it is always quicker and easier to try to obtain it amicably. However, in trying to obtain your salary you should also begin to prepare for the possibility that you might have to involve the courts (or at least plant that seed in the minds of your former employer). Remember the goal is to get what is owed to you, not to ‘create trouble’, and you can achieve that without being drawn into an adversarial position. These are the steps you should follow:
1. Send a letter of demand which should state
- the name and address of both you,
- how much is owed,
- a date by which you expect payment (at least 7 days, but we suggest 14 days)
- a request that your former employer puts in writing any issue or dispute they have with your statement on what is owed
- A clear statement informing them that if payment is not made within the period stated, you will have no choice but to involve your lawyers
- Explain that they will be liable to pay for any costs incurred by you in trying to obtain this money owed to you (including the costs of hiring a lawyer)
- The letter should preferably be sent by a means that ensures delivery to your former employer, for example by using a courier service where the letter has to be signed for.
2.If the period for payment which you have set elapses, then you should take all the documents you have – employment contract, the demand letter, and any response(s) from your former employer, and then engage the services of a lawyer.
Are you being owed salary by a current or past employer? Need to write a letter to recover your salary? We have created a free template which you can use here. Download the Unpaid salary recovery Letter.
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We hope you have found this information helpful. Please note that this information is provided for general informational purposes only and is not intended to be legal advice. No lawyer-client relationship is formed nor should any such relationship be implied. This answer is not intended to substitute for the advice of a qualified lawyer. If you require legal advice, please consult with a qualified lawyer.