Microsoft Asking for Refunds?

February 23rd, 2009 at 12:00 am

Microsoft logo

No, really. Microsoft is asking for refunds, but not from its customers. It is asking some laid off employees to return the money back given off as severance pay. It turns out that the tech giant may have given too much due to an error in payroll computation.

According to a report at TechCrunch, the 1,400 workers laid off recently by Microsoft were sent letters informing them of a grave administrative error that led to an overpayment of severance pay. It is not known how many employees were affected by the serious payroll error or what the error was about. The letter mainly requested that those who were affected should immediately act upon repaying the amount as stated on the same letter.

It doesn’t state what will happen to the laid off employees if they fail to return the overpayment amount other than that it would be carried over as part of their income tax computation for the calendar period. Prompt payment would allow for a recomputation of the employee’s income, with the stated amount taken off the gross income total.

It can be quite a bummer for all those affected employees who have received their severance pay and have already planned where to use it, only to have a portion of the amount returned to their former employee. The current economic hard times does not make it any easier. For an inconvenience, that might be putting it lightly, considering that some of the affected laid off employees are still mulling over their not so bright future. Severance pay issues after all are not something to make fun of.

How about Microsoft considering taking only a portion of the amount owed? After all, it was their error anyways. How about giving it as a gift? But then again, even the corporate Goliaths of today are not immune to the recent economic struggle and may need to save whatever money they can to survive. Oh well, life can really bite really hard especially in times like these. And it can go both ways.