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Old 04-01-2011, 09:17 PM
16 posts, read 60,314 times
Reputation: 23


My current employer has a history of terminating people without notice, (live in at-will state colorado) including this week's termination of the CFO and other big shots.

I was made an offer today at another software firm with a firm date two weeks out to accomodate my request to give my current 2 week notice.

I currently have 2 week's worth of vacation (PTO) and because of my current company's way of dealing with terminations I am afraid they may accept my resignation to be effective 'immediately' or even worse, terminate me as my job performance is going to be reviewed in the next couple weeks (mere coincidence).

A friend of mine advised me to just put a vacation request NOW so that it's timestamped and approved asap; then report to work at the new company in two weeks while collecting vacation pay. Problem is that my offer letter clearly states I "cannot be subject to another employment agreement at the time I begin work with them"...

A coworker of mine suggests just calling in sick and not give them notice. I am thinking that perhaps I should just wait until the background and credit check clears and my health benefit questions get answered and as soon as these two are good to go then just give one week's notice...

My friend doesn't think that the new company will be able to find out if I double dip. Actually the new company wanted me to start sooner because of their work load and I even offered to start a swing shift and weekends while still working at my current company while fulfilling my 2 week's notice... My future boss didn't say anything at the offer during the interview and the HR mgr said that she'll ask him again and if so modify the offer letter with an earlier date so I don't know how the HR manager would not see that offer as going against their own offer letter employment clause...

Any advice welcome
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Old 04-01-2011, 09:26 PM
Location: Brambleton, VA
2,187 posts, read 5,087,180 times
Reputation: 2098
I think it is never a good idea to start a new job on the wrong foot so to speak. If that is what their employment agreement states, then you should honor it. Just explain that you would like to take a break before you begin the new job and they should understand. But, if the current employer does fire you on the spot and pays you for your time off, then you are not obligated to them under any employment contract so you could actually start the new job with no issue. It sounds like your current job is a bit stressful if they just fire people left and right...if that is the case, you deserve a break before starting with another (hopefully better) company. Good Luck!
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Old 04-01-2011, 09:47 PM
4 posts, read 15,118 times
Reputation: 16
Your current employer is required by law to pay out any unpaid vacation. So I would suggest you give them your two weeks notice whenever you feel comfortable (preferably now but you can wait if you're worried about the background/credit check).
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Old 04-01-2011, 11:07 PM
Location: Littleton, CO
2,836 posts, read 3,315,731 times
Reputation: 4809
Originally Posted by smitty2121 View Post
Your current employer is required by law to pay out any unpaid vacation. So I would suggest you give them your two weeks notice whenever you feel comfortable (preferably now but you can wait if you're worried about the background/credit check).
Companies are not required to pay out sick time or personal time. By lumping all paid time off (vacation, personal, sick leave) into one category, and classifying the time off as Personal Time Off (PTO) instead of "vacation" time, the company effectively sidesteps the requirement to pay this money upon separation. I've already lost this argument with the state.
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Old 04-02-2011, 07:25 AM
16 posts, read 60,314 times
Reputation: 23
Thank you all for your answers. Davidv, do you also live in the denver area? See, last time I changed jobs 6 years ago my company kept my vacation time because I was required to give a two week notice they said. This current company spun off of a larger local corporation a year or so ago and that means we don't even have our employee policy handbook. I called HR and they said to 'refererence' our former company (where we spun off from) hand book.... gimme a breaK!

I read that handbook and it does not say anything about PTO and separation just that they 'encourage' giving a two week notice in writing...
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Old 04-02-2011, 08:01 AM
9,413 posts, read 30,894,336 times
Reputation: 10489
Your vacation time is your time to use as you see fit.

If you choose to start employment at another job during that time, that's your business.

The only interest your soon to be former employer may have in your activity during that time is work performed in a direct conflict with any contractual obligation you have with them. If they want two weeks notice for your departure, it's not uncommon for folk in many job situations to give that notice and leave for their earned vacation. "Double dipping" is your business, not your new employers concern, as you have earned your vacation time.
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Old 04-02-2011, 10:25 AM
16 posts, read 60,314 times
Reputation: 23
so you guys think I should put in my pto request now and then at the end of my vacation go back and give my resignation?


put in the pto request for 2 weeks to start mid april, then on my last day before vacation, give my resignation letter with a '2 week notice' and turn everything in that day? this would mean that I would be officially vacationing my last two weeks...
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Old 04-02-2011, 12:16 PM
726 posts, read 1,493,626 times
Reputation: 396
Most if not all companies have a policy that you cannot use vacation time once you have put in your notice. Fortunately though the same companies usually will pay out vacation upon leaving (but like the other poster said IT IS NOT REQUIRED BY LAW). Without knowing your company's policy there's no way for anyone to give you advice. As for as your new employer, they appear to be concerned that you are not working under an agreement (i.e contract) somewhere else. Are you currently under an employment agreement/contract with your current employer? If you are then just request a copy of the agreement. It's up to you if you want to burn your bridges with this company. If you don't care then take your vacation and never go back. I would also advise waiting to make sure the background check and everything clears before you do any quitting.
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Old 04-02-2011, 12:40 PM
Location: 25 sq. miles surrounded by reality
205 posts, read 317,325 times
Reputation: 285
Regardless of what happens with your old employer, I wouldn't do anything that violate the terms of the new offer. Your new employer may never find out if you do work both places at once, but I'd be afraid that if they did, they would fire you on the spot for cause and you'd be totally out of luck. To me, the risk of losing 2 weeks PTO just isn't worth it. Worst case, it reaffirms your decision to leave an not work for such a lousy company.

Another thing to consider is IC and patents. I work for a technology company and when I signed my employment paperwork, I had to disclose any projects that I had worked on previously that I wanted to retain rights to. Everything that I produce related to my job is the property of my employer and not mine. If you do design and/or produce software or hardware as part of your job, that could be a problem.

Congratulations on your job offer!
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Old 04-02-2011, 01:17 PM
16 posts, read 60,314 times
Reputation: 23
these last two posts from Lisa and choosing78 are quite on target; I'd definitely want to make sure credit/criminal/educational check clears so I'd say that at most I'll be giving a 1 week notice if that (maybe less if I don't get a confirmation next week.

Then as Lisa mentioned, in my resignation letter I'll give thanks won't say why (just like they don't give reasons as to why they let go of the CFO) and will ask to be guided on exit paperwork and 401K, unused PTO, etc.

Like Lisa said, if they don't give me the PTO oh well that just proves their decline... actually they're planning on implementing a use it or lose it plan soon...
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