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Old 04.08.2014, 12:33
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Employer witholding pay

Hi guys, I have a question and wondered if anyone can provide some advise or know of a similar situation.

I had worked for 2 months with a company under a temp contract. The employer has not paid my salary now since June and when i finally reached him halfway through July, after many attempts, he advised that he has found irregularities in daily takings and will not pay my salary until he has cleared these irregularities.

He has not been forthcoming with any information and has not responded to my regular contact requests.

The job was in retail and dealt with direct customers and sales. Therefore i was closing the shop on several occasions and was dealing directly with the incoming money.

Does anyone know what my rights are in this sort of situation....i really need to get this matter resolved as i am innocent of his insinuations and really need to get paid?

Any advise would be appreciated.
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Old 04.08.2014, 12:45
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Re: Employer witholding pay

Do you have a printed and signed contract by both parties?


I don't think he can just withhold your salary. There has
to be some kind of proof, I would think.
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Old 04.08.2014, 12:48
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Re: Employer witholding pay

Here is a link where you can get free legal advice.


Unfortunately, the link is only in German, but I think most
attorneys have a high Level of English.


https://www.stadt-zuerich.ch/portal/...sauskunft.html
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Old 04.08.2014, 13:02
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well actually there lies one major problem and that is that the employment contract was verbal between me and the second in charge and now the employer who is withholding pay is the director. However I have agreed to the verbal agreement and so did the person that employed me on this casual basis.

I would never normally accept work based on a verbal contract although i needed the cash and have not had a lot of good luck recently with jobs in switzerland.

Last edited by 3Wishes; 04.08.2014 at 17:47. Reason: merging successive posts
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Old 04.08.2014, 13:52
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Re: Employer witholding pay

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I would never normally accept work based on a verbal contract although i needed the cash and have not had a lot of good luck recently with jobs in switzerland.

Only ever had it in writing once in 35 years, and that was in CH. I have worked for 20 companies whilst in CH
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Old 04.08.2014, 13:53
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Re: Employer witholding pay

Did they pay you at least one time? That would certainly help
establish the proof of a contract.


I would go to the legal advice link posted above and ask
for advice. It doesn't cost anything.
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Old 04.08.2014, 14:02
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Re: Employer witholding pay

What "irregularities"?


Generally - and I'm more or less copying-pasting my comment in another thread a bit further down on the same topic - the following applies:

They are obliged to pay you. Send a registered letter requesting them to transfer the outstanding money and set a deadline (can be a few days only). You can write that you EXPECT payment by date XY and in case they don't come through, you will take the necessary next steps.


Also, while I personally wouldn't accept a verbal contract either, there is no legal requirement to conclude employment contracts in written form. Even if there's just been a verbal agreement, it is of course legally binding. The only problem being that there is little or nothing to prove you had such an agreement in the first place... If you had any previous salary payment or any e-mail conversation that actually sort-of confirms your employment, it would be incredibly helpful.
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Old 04.08.2014, 14:08
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Re: Employer witholding pay

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What "irregularities"?


Generally - and I'm more or less copying-pasting my comment in another thread a bit further down on the same topic - the following applies:

They are obliged to pay you. Send a registered letter requesting them to transfer the outstanding money and set a deadline (can be a few days only). You can write that you EXPECT payment by date XY and in case they don't come through, you will take the necessary next steps.


Also, while I personally wouldn't accept a verbal contract either, there is no legal requirement to conclude employment contracts in written form. Even if there's just been a verbal agreement, it is of course legally binding. The only problem being that there is little or nothing to prove you had such an agreement in the first place... If you had any previous salary payment or any e-mail conversation that actually sort-of confirms your employment, it would be incredibly helpful.
thats just it......irregularities. the director wants to meet to talk personally to explain his found irregularities but over the last month has not divulged any information about the irregularities.

the director has also advised that he has told me why payment will not be made and that i need to discuss this matter with him in person before anything further will happen.

he believes that there was a big difference between the takings and the register print out.
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Old 04.08.2014, 14:52
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Re: Employer witholding pay

So they basically accuse you of stealing money and now they're withholding your salary until that's resolved?
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Old 04.08.2014, 14:53
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Re: Employer witholding pay

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I would never normally accept work based on a verbal contract although i needed the cash and have not had a lot of good luck recently with jobs in switzerland.
So why have you done it this time then? I would never ever accept any job without a written contract, especially temporary ones. Exactely for this reason.

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Here is a link where you can get free legal advice.


Unfortunately, the link is only in German, but I think most
attorneys have a high Level of English.


https://www.stadt-zuerich.ch/portal/...sauskunft.html
Where do you (OP) live and work? If indeed in Lucerne, as indicated, the Zurich portal is not of so much usage, though the OR is the same anywhere in Switzerland.

Checkout the respective official site in canton of Luzern! http://www.gerichte.lu.ch/index/organisation/o_ur.htm
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Old 04.08.2014, 15:07
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Re: Employer witholding pay

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So why have you done it this time then? I would never ever accept any job without a written contract, especially temporary ones. Exactely for this reason.



Where do you (OP) live and work? If indeed in Lucerne, as indicated, the Zurich portal is not of so much usage, though the OR is the same anywhere in Switzerland.

Checkout the respective official site in canton of Luzern! http://www.gerichte.lu.ch/index/organisation/o_ur.htm
thanks for the advice. I think that i will meet with him and see what he has to say and then take it from there. I shall also ask for him to put in writing the irregularities that he believes i am responsible for so that i then have something to take to legal advice or to refer to for future reference
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Old 04.08.2014, 15:58
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Re: Employer witholding pay

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thanks for the advice. I think that i will meet with him and see what he has to say and then take it from there. I shall also ask for him to put in writing the irregularities that he believes i am responsible for so that i then have something to take to legal advice or to refer to for future reference
You're missing the key point. The company does not have the legal right to withhold your salary like that. Send the registered letter as Samaire suggested. Feel free to meet with the Director as well, but don't wait with the letter.
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Old 04.08.2014, 16:31
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Re: Employer witholding pay

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You're missing the key point. The company does not have the legal right to withhold your salary like that. Send the registered letter as Samaire suggested. Feel free to meet with the Director as well, but don't wait with the letter.
Jep, exactly.

Path, even in the case you were responsible for whatever "irregularities" they are referring to, heck, even if you had indeed stolen money, they are not allowed to not pay you your salary. It is their obligation to pay you, no matter what.

Any potential other issues are subject to separate discussions.
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Old 04.08.2014, 16:35
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Re: Employer witholding pay

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Jep, exactly.

Path, even in the case you were responsible for whatever "irregularities" they are referring to, heck, even if you had indeed stolen money, they are not allowed to not pay you your salary. It is their obligation to pay you, no matter what.

Any potential other issues are subject to separate discussions.
ok, that is good to know. The only problem i have is that i have no legal employment contract knowledge in Switzerland. I am more versed with Australian law when it comes to work agreements and obligations.

do you know of somewhere that i may be able to refer to a written law that provides information of what an employers obligations are in writing? so that i have something to base this on?

If you were to know this it would be a massive help.

Thanks so much in advance
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Old 04.08.2014, 16:44
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Re: Employer witholding pay

That's why I told you what to do

If you want a reference, then it's OR 323 Abs. 1 http://www.admin.ch/ch/e/rs/220/a323.html


Also, if you want initial legal input, call here: http://www.projure.ch/site/index.cfm...59/vsprache/DE I think it's free of charge. But they will pretty much tell you the same I did - registered letter with deadline. If no feedback and no payment, next steps need legal support.

Btw - are you still working there atm?
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Old 04.08.2014, 16:50
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Re: Employer witholding pay

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That's why I told you what to do

If you want a reference, then it's OR 323 Abs. 1 http://www.admin.ch/ch/e/rs/220/a323.html


Also, if you want initial legal input, call here: http://www.projure.ch/site/index.cfm...59/vsprache/DE I think it's free of charge. But they will pretty much tell you the same I did - registered letter with deadline. If no feedback and no payment, next steps need legal support.

Btw - are you still working there atm?
well thats the other issue, they refuse to roster me for any further work until they resolve the irregularities.

Ive already in my first communication with them asked them for a deadline and no response was given to that.
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Old 04.08.2014, 16:51
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Re: Employer witholding pay

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So why have you done it this time then? I would never ever accept any job without a written contract, especially temporary ones. Exactely for this reason.
OP was obviously desperate when accepting these conditions, and of course someone took advantage of it. Simples.

You wouldn't think that could happen in CH, heh...
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Old 04.08.2014, 17:13
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Re: Employer witholding pay

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well thats the other issue, they refuse to roster me for any further work until they resolve the irregularities.

Ive already in my first communication with them asked them for a deadline and no response was given to that.
I didn't ask so far - but is their claim justified? Did you do something wrong, that you know of? Not that it changes anything about the fact that they owe you your salary. But I'd be interested in knowing how this all came about.

I can't help but think you're getting effed here. They claim there are some "irregularities", but refuse to speak with you within a reasonable time period (i.e. less than a week). In the meantime, they don't give you any work and don't pay you, probably hoping you'll give up and let it go - which by all means, you shouldn't do.

Was that deadline by e-mail or registered mail? Anything other than the latter won't do.
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Old 04.08.2014, 18:00
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Re: Employer witholding pay

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So why have you done it this time then? I would never ever accept any job without a written contract, especially temporary ones. Exactely for this reason.



Where do you (OP) live and work? If indeed in Lucerne, as indicated, the Zurich portal is not of so much usage, though the OR is the same anywhere in Switzerland.

Checkout the respective official site in canton of Luzern! http://www.gerichte.lu.ch/index/organisation/o_ur.htm


Of course, the Portal in Zürich is of use. I used it for employment
law advice dealing with an issue in Geneva while living in Zug. The advice given was very good and spot on!
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Old 04.08.2014, 18:13
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Re: Employer witholding pay

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OP was obviously desperate when accepting these conditions, and of course someone took advantage of it. Simples.

You wouldn't think that could happen in CH, heh...
Do you have a valid work permit? And was your employment declared with all social payments and tax deducted, etc? If not- it would make it even easier for them to take advantage- as they know you would hesistate to go to the Law and highlight your illegal situation. Hope you can work it out- good luck.
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