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Thread: Holding on to company property

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    Holding on to company property

    I have recently resigned. The company still has to reimburse me around ZAR3000 for expenses. I have not yet received my final salary, nor a reference letter. I am allowed to hold on to company laptop and mobile until I get paid?

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    no really sure about the legal implications.
    At 1 of my previous companies someone did the same and the company made a case of theft at the police station. Don't know if the guy returned it or the company dropped the case because I have left the company at more or less the same point.

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    Quote Originally Posted by joefromcapetown View Post
    I have recently resigned. The company still has to reimburse me around ZAR3000 for expenses. I have not yet received my final salary, nor a reference letter. I am allowed to hold on to company laptop and mobile until I get paid?
    I would not recommend that - as an employer myself, if someone did that to me I would have them locked up before the weekend.
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    So what recourse is there?

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    CCMA or Department of Labour is your best bet I would say

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    Quote Originally Posted by joefromcapetown View Post
    I am allowed to hold on to company laptop and mobile until I get paid?
    Possession is nine-tenths of the law right? I was involved in a failed start up some years ago and was owed over R100 000. When the company folded I kept the laptop, cellphone, pc, marketing materials, roll up banners, stationery etc...pretty much everything that was in my possession. Since I new my ex partner had no funds to persue legal recourse, I wrote off the 100k and kept what was left and moved on to other projects. School fees.

    I would say yes, hold on to that stuff and only release it until they cough up what's owed.

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    BD - I think your situation was different - you started something with someone. Joe above worked for someone. If the company lays a theft charge against him it might not go to court, but that charge will stay on your record. You have to ask yourself do you want that ?
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    Quote Originally Posted by HR Solutions View Post
    BD - I think your situation was different - you started something with someone. Joe above worked for someone. If the company lays a theft charge against him it might not go to court, but that charge will stay on your record. You have to ask yourself do you want that ?
    For 3 grand probably not, OP needs to judge based on the situation.

    I still wouldn't volunteer returning anything unless they asked for it back and threatened opening a case of theft and lawyer up.

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    There are two ways to do crim checks. The one way only picks up actual convictions - the other way will pick up EVERYTHING - including any charge that was laid against you, even if it did not go to court or was dismissed or dropped etc. It stays on the record. A lot of people are unaware of this.
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    Unfortunately the one case has nothing to do with the other as far as the law is concerned.
    The company probably will lay charges of theft against the employee, as this is very simple to do, and it merely means going to the police station and making a charge.

    My suggestion, and I am no lawyer, but I would write a letter/email in which I would state to the company, that upon receipt of your outstanding monies, and you name each and every item that they owe you, you will return the equipment.
    Depending on their answer, it may require that you return the equipment if requested to do so. What it does do, is that it gets the company to acknowledge or reject that they have not or will not pay you. You can then use this as evidence in the case they never pay you.
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