Independent advice on all aspects of employment law
Bonus Disputes in London
Call Employment Law Solicitors for employment law advice in London and throughout England and Wales. We are experienced in advising on high value bonus disputes in the High Court for executives across a number of sectors.
Bonus’ discretionary or guaranteed?
Your contract of employment along with the accompanying bonus documentation will determine the terms of your bonus and whether it is guaranteed or discretionary. Bonus claims are governed by contract law and it can be a complex question to determine whether they are discretionary or guaranteed. If you are unsure of your position we are able to help you.
There is usually no element of discretion in respect of guaranteed bonuses and provided that your contract is properly drafted and you are in employment at the specified time that the bonus falls due for payment, you are entitled to the bonus. Failure to pay a guaranteed bonus can be dealt with via the County or the High Court depending on the value of the claim. This form of debt recovery action can become complicated if your employment has been terminated. Ultimately the decision will be determined by the way that your original contract of employment was drafted alongside the reason for the termination of your employment.
Claims involving discretionary bonuses can also be complex. In the majority of discretionary bonus schemes, employers retain a discretion as to who is eligible for a bonus, how much is payable, and whether to pay a bonus or not in any given year. However, in practice there is no such thing in law as a purely discretionary bonus. Many employees are unaware that it is an implied term of any bonus scheme that the employer’s discretion should be exercised in a way that is not perverse or irrational.
Obtain legal advice:
if you get a bonus which you think is unfair, in particular, if you think you have performed well throughout the year
if you feel that you have been awarded a bonus which is unfair due to a potentially discriminatory reason
if you are in a discretionary bonus scheme and you are thinking of resigning.