May 1, 2020 (Cook County, Illinois): Our client, a former director-level employee of a transportation company, filed a claim for a 1-year severance payout. The defendant's employer took the position that severance was only due if the employee was terminated by the company. As our client had resigned, the company refused to pay the severance. As such, we filed a lawsuit in Cook County, Illinois to recover one year of severance pay plus other benefits. We sued for breach of contract and filed a claim under the Illinois Wage Payment and Collection Act which allows the recovery of attorney fees and interest. The Company filed a motion to dismiss all claims. The Court denied the motion to dismiss in its entirety.
The court characterized part of the company’s contract as “incomprehensible”, “unclear”, and “ambiguous”. The court also found that under the Wage Payment and Collection Act, “an employee has a vested right to severance pay.” A copy of Judge Esrig’s motion to dismiss is available here.
Congratulations to Attorney Thalia Pacheco for leading the briefing on this important motion.
We look forward to pushing the case towards trial.