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Is this legal??

SecondAccount

New Recruit
Offline
Using a dummy account so my fleet owner doesn't find it. Details aside. I want to end my contract early. Part of my contract is that they can keep X weeks of pay if the contract is terminated early by either party. I'm worried that they will terminate the contract right before it ends anyways because they know I want to leave.

This all leads to the question. "Is this legal?"
 

Turtle

Administrator
Staff member
Owner/Operator
Offline
You should have a lawyer take a look at the contract, but generally speaking, whatever you agreed to in the contract, unless it's expressly illegal, is contractually binding.
 
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Shotcallerj

New Recruit
Owner/Operator
Offline
Using a dummy account so my fleet owner doesn't find it. Details aside. I want to end my contract early. Part of my contract is that they can keep X weeks of pay if the contract is terminated early by either party. I'm worried that they will terminate the contract right before it ends anyways because they know I want to leave.

This all leads to the question. "Is this legal?"
Something is illegal only if it breaks local, state, or federal law. Don't know your fleet owner but I doubt he's going to put anything in writing that is evidence of them breaking the law.

Whenever you give notice at a job... You always run the risk of them cutting you loose. If this is crossing your mind... Chances are whoever the owner is, they have done shady stuff in the past. You really don't have much of a recourse other than to try to take them to civil court, however you most likely signed an arbitration agreement whenever you signed your contract so it would just go to a mediator who is going to be in their favor from the beginning.

My advice is don't get the cart ahead of the horse and see what happens... If you lose a couple of weeks of pay.... Chalk it up to a learning experience.
 
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Tennesseahawk

Veteran Expediter
Offline
Terminating a contract in order to keep money they owe a contractor sounds like something that would be shady, and thus non-binding in a contract, if you can prove that's what they're doing. Sounds like an EEOC thing. I'm with the others... have a lawyer read it.

Why would you ever sign a contract that ties a length of contract to what you've made? In fact, why would you ever sign a contract that subjects you to being beholden to someone you don't know, (usually) and restricts you from leaving if there's a chance you wouldn't like working for that someone (which is always)?

This may be a "chalk it up to experience" experience.
 
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Noname

Veteran Expediter
Owner/Operator
US Navy
Offline
If you have no reason to leave early, then you should expect to forfeit you earnings as stated in the contract. It costs money in lost production for an owner to find a driver, then find another replacement driver.

If you have a valid reason for early exit, you might speak with the owner first to remedy the situation.

I can't imagine the cost of an attorney would be worth an opinion. If the opinion is owner can withhold your money, you are out your money plus costs of opinion. If attorney says owner can't do it, you can go to court and the cost of suing for your "improperly" withheld earnings would be way more than what you might lose. Then you'd still have to find a way to collect the money you are owed. I'm guessing the contract doesn't allow you to recover attorney fees and court costs if you win, but might provide that you have to pay owners fees and expenses if you lose.

I'll have to agree with those who said it is a learning experience. Work out your objections with the owner, or just stick it out until the time constraint has passed, then leave.
 

Tennesseahawk

Veteran Expediter
Offline
If you have no reason to leave early, then you should expect to forfeit you earnings as stated in the contract. It costs money in lost production for an owner to find a driver, then find another replacement driver.

If you have a valid reason for early exit, you might speak with the owner first to remedy the situation.

I can't imagine the cost of an attorney would be worth an opinion. If the opinion is owner can withhold your money, you are out your money plus costs of opinion. If attorney says owner can't do it, you can go to court and the cost of suing for your "improperly" withheld earnings would be way more than what you might lose. Then you'd still have to find a way to collect the money you are owed. I'm guessing the contract doesn't allow you to recover attorney fees and court costs if you win, but might provide that you have to pay owners fees and expenses if you lose.

I'll have to agree with those who said it is a learning experience. Work out your objections with the owner, or just stick it out until the time constraint has passed, then leave.
Court should always be an option in a case like this; if anything, to make this situation a living hell for the bastige holding your money. A good contract attorney could be worth a couple hundred bucks, even if only to help you with a gameplan if you're going small claims.

We have the reputation of being a rug for owners to wipe their feet on. It's about time to erase that stigma. The owners may hold the money, but a smart driver holds the cards.
 
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