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Alan Olson Argues Bad Faith Bonus Denial Claim to Wisconsin Supreme Court

Today was a good day for Wisconsin employees. My brain is still in overdrive fromSC pic - 11.4.10.jpg the rapid-fire questions during my oral argument to the Wisconsin Supreme Court in Madison. This case involves our client, "Deanne," who sought to enforce her former employer's ("the Bank's") duty to pay bonus money that she had earned during the year preceding her termination, pursuant to an incentive pay plan (the "Plan"). The Bank refused to pay Deanne because it terminated her employment at the start of scheduled Plan payments. Deanne's former boss claimed that Deanne was terminated because she lied that she had no knowledge of a co-worker's plan to leave the Bank with its customers. In reality, Deanne was fired in order to stop her receipt of earned bonus pay. The Bank's executives admitted during depositions however that no one had ever reached the conclusion that Deanne was involved with taking clients or customers from the Bank. In fact, the sole piece of information upon which the Bank based its termination decision was a misstated phone conversation overheard by a third-party. Deanne testified that she was not even asked by the Bank about the co-worker's plans to leave or to take clients. Upon terminating Deanne, her boss unilaterally contacted payroll and reversed the direct deposit of her earned bonus pay. He stopped Deanne's pay schedule without review by the Oversight Committee as dictated in the Plan document.

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