This actually happened to my wife but she's under too much stress to deal with it and I'm not a citizen so I'm less sure what to do.

Timeline: In October she did an interview, having already booked flights to leave for 10 work days over Christmas, and in the interview it was agreed that this time could be taken as PTO. In orientation when the job started (a week or two later) it was stated that PTO had to be accrued, at a rate of 8 hours per two months, but we we're under the impression that the agreed PTO was a condition of hiring. On Nov 27th we have an email stating that PTO was approved for the given date. Jan 4th was payday and there was no pay.

The Chief Medical Officer (this is a private healthcare job and she's the only one that could approve PTO) said "why would I approve that in the interview?" and when confronted with the email said it was a "terminology error".

What can we do? For info these wages would be about $950 after tax so we're willing to do a decent bit to get this back. In terms of resources only her parents and sister are in the country (and aren't that headstrong), I'm a STEM PhD student and may or may not have access to legal resources through my university but it's too hard for me to check because I'm flying right now.

  • "but hey the holiday was a condition of hiring right?" Asking us to confirm that issue is pointless because we do not know the language used in the records or negotiations. You might want to edit your question so as to provide more detail with which we can hint you on whether the medical officer's approval was inadvertent "terminology" error or whether the employer shall meet its agreement on last month's PTO pay. – Iñaki Viggers Jan 7 at 18:45
  • Sorry I was just explaining our thought process at the time, I'll edit it to make it more clear. – Pepe Silvia Jan 7 at 18:55
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    A full year's PTO amounts to only 6 days, but your wife is requesting almost double that. Can't say for certain without more detail, but it seems feasible that this could be a miscommunication that she could take the time off but wouldn't be paid. It seems odd that they would offer PTO above what would be accrued even with a full year's tenure. Still, if it was indeed agreed to, it should be honored. – Nuclear Wang Jan 7 at 19:09
  • "we have an email stating that PTO was approved for the given date"—so was it just one date, not 10 work days date range? – Greendrake Jan 8 at 0:43
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    No, for the 10 given dates. – Pepe Silvia Jan 8 at 0:47

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