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Ex-Employer Balking at Bonus, Expense Check

February 04, 2001

Q I resigned recently as a sales manager for a bank-card sales company. The company owes me a bonus of about $1,500 for hitting our sales goal the month before I resigned and an expense reimbursement check for $500.

It only paid my salary and commission after withholding it for nearly three weeks. What can I do, if anything, to get my bonus and reimbursement paid?

--B.L., Los Angeles


A You can file a claim with the California Labor Commission office in your area.

That agency processes employee claims for compensation, including claims that an employee did not get paid everything he or she was entitled to before leaving.

If it is determined that your employer wrongfully failed to pay you wages, including bonuses or expense reimbursements, when due, your employer could be obliged to pay "waiting time" penalties of up to 30 days' wages.

--Michael A. Hood

Employment law attorney

Paul, Hastings, Janofsky & Walker

If you have a question about an on-the-job situation, please mail it to Shop Talk, Los Angeles Times, P.O. Box 2008, Costa Mesa, CA 92626; dictate it to (714) 966-7873; or e-mail it to Include your initials and hometown. The Shop Talk column is designed to answer questions of general interest. It should not be construed as legal advice. Recent Shop Talk columns are available at

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