What precautions should be taken when you want to change your employees’ salaries?

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When it comes to changing an employee’s salary (including an increase), French regulations require the employee’s prior consent, which means the signing of an amendment to the employment contract between the employer and the employee.

In a ruling dated June 21st, 2023, the French Supreme Court reminded us of the importance of the employee’s prior consent in the event of a change in salary.

In this case, the employee signed an amendment to his employment contract relating to a new variable pay scheme introduced by the company, which no longer mentioned his annual bonus.

After his dismissal, the employee made a claim against his employer for the payment of his annual bonus on the grounds that he had never agreed to the cancellation of the bonus.

The highest court upheld the employee’s claims, ruling that the signing of an amendment that omitted to refer to the bonus was not sufficient to characterize the employee’s clear and unequivocal agreement to accept the removal of this part of his remuneration.

It therefore seems necessary in this case to state clearly in the preamble to the amendment that any part of remuneration from which the employee previously benefited has been removed in order to demonstrate the employee’s clear and unequivocal intention to waive it.


Should you have any questions, or should you need assistance in this matter, please do not hesitate to contact us.


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