Print 57 comment(s) - last by JKflipflop98.. on Mar 5 at 8:53 PM

A redacted image of the letter Microsoft sent out.  (Source: TechCrunch)
Accounting error sees HR scrambling to get some of its money back

What’s something worse than being pink slipped? If you’re a former Microsoft employee, it could be having some of your severance pay taken back.

According to TechCrunch, someone at Microsoft made an accounting error when calculating laid-off employees’ severance pay, resulting in some checks being mailed out that were a little too generous. Now, Microsoft wants that money back.

“An inadvertent administrative error occurred that resulted in an overpayment in severance pay by Microsoft,” reads a letter the company mailed out. “We ask that you repay the overpayment and sincerely apologize for any inconvenience to you.”

TechCrunch reports a Microsoft spokesperson confirmed the letters but refused to give specific details, calling it an internal, private matter between the company and the employees it let go.

The spokesperson did confirm, however, that the error worked both ways: while some employees were overcompensated, others received less than what they were entitled to.

A photograph of one of these letters, provided anonymously, shows little more than a request for the money back and some important tax information, with some rather curious advice on how repayment “in a later calendar year” would affect the receiver’s taxes.

CNET suggests the letter contained a “veiled threat” of monetary punishment, but given the aforementioned tax suggestion it is hard to see how the letter, in and of itself, sports teeth. There is no mentioned deadline.

On a rather humorous side note, a poll accompanying the TechCrunch article suggests that almost 75% of the 8,000 total voters would ignore the letter and keep the cash – and only 13% would immediately give the money back.

UPDATE 23-Feb-2009: Microsoft reversed its stance and is now letting the overpaid employees keep the extra money.

Comments     Threshold

This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled

RE: Legal?
By MadMan007 on 2/23/2009 9:12:39 AM , Rating: 2
It may depend upon the terms of employment, what agreements were signed and so on. But maybe they're merely 'asking' because they don't really have any leverage.

RE: Legal?
By mcnabney on 2/23/2009 10:43:16 AM , Rating: 5
They likely signed for their severance package during their exit interview. If that is the figure that was signed for MS is SOL.

RE: Legal?
By mondo1234 on 2/23/2009 12:45:54 PM , Rating: 4
I understand blacking out the personal info, but why blackout the amounts?

RE: Legal?
By mindless1 on 2/23/2009 5:08:49 PM , Rating: 2
Because it could also help to identify someone.

RE: Legal?
By JKflipflop98 on 3/5/2009 8:53:08 PM , Rating: 2
The amount was probably $0.24.

RE: Legal?
By 67STANG on 2/23/2009 6:49:40 PM , Rating: 2
All of this thread is for not. Microsoft has announced that the employees can keep the extra money.

Good for you Microsoft. (we all know what Apple would have done...)

RE: Legal?
By ggordonliddy on 2/23/2009 8:28:33 PM , Rating: 3
> All of this thread is for not.

Do you mean "for naught"? (Do any kids actually read books anymore? Reading is how you learn to spell basic words like that.)

RE: Legal?
By 67STANG on 2/24/09, Rating: -1
RE: Legal?
By meepstone on 2/25/2009 3:29:51 PM , Rating: 2
when i first read your mistake i thought it was knot, not naught.

RE: Legal?
By mondo1234 on 2/23/2009 10:44:53 PM , Rating: 2
MS was quoted as saying:

"We should have handled this situation in a more thoughtful manner."

"Folks that want porn can buy an Android phone." -- Steve Jobs
Related Articles

Most Popular Articles5 Cases for iPhone 7 and 7 iPhone Plus
September 18, 2016, 10:08 AM
Laptop or Tablet - Which Do You Prefer?
September 20, 2016, 6:32 AM
Update: Samsung Exchange Program Now in Progress
September 20, 2016, 5:30 AM
Smartphone Screen Protectors – What To Look For
September 21, 2016, 9:33 AM
Walmart may get "Robot Shopping Carts?"
September 17, 2016, 6:01 AM

Copyright 2016 DailyTech LLC. - RSS Feed | Advertise | About Us | Ethics | FAQ | Terms, Conditions & Privacy Information | Kristopher Kubicki