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Compensation Disputes

Bakhtiari & Harrison represents senior executives, managers, investment bankers, registered representatives and registered investment advisors in employment related compensation disputes over salary, incentive compensation or other benefits.

In the securities industry, it is commonplace for professionals to receive a significant portion of their annual income through bonuses or incentive compensation, with year-end bonuses frequently constituting the majority of an employee’s total annual earnings. Most brokerage firms and investment banks distribute these bonuses during the first few months of the new year, based on earnings accrued in the previous calendar year.

However, disputes can arise when an employee departs from the firm or is terminated before these year-end bonuses are distributed. Such situations often lead to contention over whether and what amount of compensation is owed to the departing employee. It is not uncommon for firms to withhold bonuses on grounds that may appear arbitrary or unjustified. Employers might claim that the employee did not meet certain criteria, which may have been established after the fact, or assert that the employee has already received sufficient payment, or that the bonus is subject to some form of offset.

These practices can give rise to substantial legal claims for unpaid compensation. A law firm with expertise in employment law, particularly one that is well-versed in securities industry compensation disputes, can be instrumental in these cases. These law firms have a deep understanding of the legal frameworks and typical contractual agreements within the securities industry, enabling them to provide robust representation to aggrieved employees.

When facing disputes over bonus payments, consulting with a law firm that is experienced in securities compensation can provide employees with the necessary legal support to challenge unfair practices and recover owed compensation. These attorneys are skilled at navigating the complex interplay of employment contracts, bonus stipulations, and the broader legal obligations of employers.

Moreover, such law firms can also offer preventative advice to both employers and employees. For employers, they can provide guidance on structuring compensation agreements in a clear and equitable manner to prevent future disputes. For employees, they can offer strategies on how to negotiate and secure fair and legally protected compensation packages.

Engaging a law firm in matters of disputed securities industry bonuses ensures that employees receive the compensation they have rightfully earned and enforces the accountability of financial institutions in their employment practices. This legal intervention not only aids individual clients but also promotes transparency and fairness within the financial services industry as a whole.

Registered Representatives with substantial books of business often take on partners, sometimes views diverge and disputes concerning compensation, compensation splits or the ownership of the book of business take place. Sometimes despite good intentions, senior management or other executives support one partner.

Most employment disputes in the securities industry are arbitrated before the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority. Bakhtiari & Harrison has extensive experience resolving disputes in this forum around the country.