Below are the points as per discussion over call and email with the Junior HR and Senior HR for my wife:

To add background my wife had lower back pain and after which since she was unable to sit and work so we moved to our hometown immediately and informed the HR team through email about the same on 8th Jan. Post which the HR called and understood the situation on 13th Jan and then over email he said he will initiate the exit process with recovery amount required.

1) From the very first day itself we have kept complete transparency regarding my wife's health concerns and measures taken alongwith the information that we are not in a situation to pay the recovery amount adhering to my medical expenses.

2) On 18th January 2022 we received an email from Junior HR to submit the laptop. We had a detailed discussion over the call where junior HR ensured that submission of my laptop would be the last step and the exit process would be closed and we won't be bothered further with any recovery amount. Additionally, she also informed me that the last working day has been updated as 8th January 2022. We believe there was no discussion with my wife about the last working day nor was it informed to her earlier before updating it.

3) After laptop submission we received an email, from the senior HR, on 20th January 2022 that mentions the recovery amount for 2 months has to be paid else legal actions would be taken. That was never discussed with us earlier to laptop submission.

We believe that we had kept the HR team updated with my wife's health issues timely. We had tried best to receive and explain the situation to the HR team and also shared the required documents whenever the demand was made.
During the process the HR team had never informed my wife about her actual last working day, modified last working day, the amount of money to be paid as recovery amount.

Had the HR team managed to keep transparency about the above details with accurate numbers/amount; My wife would have risked her health to serve the notice period rather than getting into a conflicting situation which is in no way contributing to her health improvement. In other words, she got a panic attack and went into depression after reading the email about recovery amount right after laptop submission as it came as a shocker.

Hence, we have informed the HR team that we have been quite honest and cooperative in the whole process even if my wife was unwell(explaining about her situation from day 1, answering calls and giving updates, documents required till submission of company assets with zero issues/conflicts). In our current situation my wife is not expecting the salary for 8 working days, leave encashment and experience letter because she didn't get enough chances to get completely into work at ________ as she had joined one month earlier. So, we have requested & pleaded with HR to kindly understand the situation and close this process.

But we are afraid the HR might file a lawsuit.

From India, Bengaluru
Dinesh Divekar
Business Mentor, Consultant And Trainer
Partner - Risk Management

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Dinesh Divekar

Dear member,

What is the length of service of your wife in the current company? The last but one paragraph of your post says:

In our current situation my wife is not expecting the salary for 8 working days, leave encashment and experience letter because she didn't get enough chances to get completely into work at ________ as she had joined one month earlier.

Does it mean that your wife worked just for a month in the company? If yes, then her sickness is bound to create room for suspicion.

Otherwise, it appears that you and your wife were oversimple and over-humble. Some amount of shrewdness could have been shown. Whatever may be the length of service, the requirement was to apply for Leave Without Pay (LWP) on medical grounds. She could have attached a certificate from the medical authorities stating she cannot sit for more than 1-2 hours. You could have projected that your wife needs employment. However, considering the long absence, HR would have forced your wife to resign. This would have helped you in negotiating for payment in lieu of serving the notice period.

Lastly, your query on HR filing a suit. Your fears are misplaced. Filing a suit is not that easy. It drains energy so much that even after winning the case, the winning party cannot enjoy the victory. It is called a Pyrrhic victory.


Dinesh Divekar

From India, Bangalore
Thanks Dinesh,
Let me help you answer the questions you have asked.
My wife joined on 8th December 2021 and she had worked for close to a month.
A similar issue occurred to her 2 years back and she was unable to stand-up even without any support. It was identified as some nerve problem and she recovered after 2 weeks of medication and bed rest.
We just got afraid when this happened and immediately decided to move to hometown and informed the HR.
We also shared the doctor prescription to the senior HR after the first discussion with him on 13th January 2022.

From India, Bengaluru

I get a distinct feeling that you have not been truthful on the forum (obviously you have not been truthful to your employer).

Someone joins a company and works for a month, gets a better job and wants to switch without paying notice pay, what is the best thing to do? Fake a medical condition. Its very useful that you have already got one certificate 2 years ago and think people will fall for it.

Why do I think so?
If someone has a medical problem, they don't rush back to hometown. They instead speak to the doctor. If the doctor says it can't be cured, then they ask for the company to relieve them, else they would ask for medical leave, as Dinesh has said above. Your wife has back pain and you immediately return to home town. So you were not working? You also left your job at the same time as your wife? Which HR will believe this story?

As far as your contention that you returned the Laptop, I can see from the post that you planned to hold on to it to bargain with the company as they would want their asset back. Thank your stars you didn't, because in that case, I am sure the company would file a FIR against you and ensure you and your wife are branded criminals.

The company is doing the right thing in demanding you pay them the notice pay. I hope they proceed against you in court and recover the money. Incidentally, it is their right, and the conversation posted above does not seem they have hidden or pretended anything else. Did they, for example, promise that they will give you a clean exit if you return the laptop?

From India, Mumbai
I am replying to Saswata Banerjee to clarify certain points.

My wife was getting a double digit salary with 5 years of experience. I don't think that is less than market standards in any way.

Secondly I have my job running and I never mentioned that I left my job. It would be really foolish of me to plan to leave job my when my wife is going unemployed. I am an expert in my field of work and along with job I do enough freelancing projects not only to increase my knowledge but also to earn enough so that I can be financially stable.

Well we are not doctors and a general physician doesn't have enough data points to point out the root cause. Even doctor needs experience and time. Back in 2018 maybe I was there with my wife while she was struggling to stand up in the queu for registration in the hospital when I requested for a wheel chair. So in simple terms it's back pain like I had back pain last year but it was due to lever and nothing to do with the back. Hope you get the context that when we common people mention back pain it could not be something that gets fixed by applying a painrelief ointment. The intensity of such pain would be different from what my wife felt. Now after proper diagnosis it was identified to be potential PIVD condition. And so she is on medications and resting.

Next on the point of job switching. Well if there had been a plan for job switching then there would not have been any problem for paying the recovery amount. Let me tell you why, it is because 99% of the organisation in IT sector agree for a buy back and so with the relevant documents the new organisation would have paid back the amount. I never heard any HR denying to do so.

Regarding holding the laptop for bargain. As i mentioned clearly in my post that after we received the email from the HR to return the laptop we called her up to get a clarification on the process. In the call she ensured that there is no other process left apart from asset submission. Don't you see here who was trying to deceive whom? And what would we even do with a dead laptop? Bargain? Sorry I don't have an expertise like you to think of any grounds of bargain by holding the laptop to be honest.

Till today we haven't received any email on the last working day registered on the organisation portal even after multiple requests.

Hence, I would like to request you to watch your words and be respectful to others and please feel free to reply to the thread only if you could bring something useful to the plate.

From India, Bengaluru

After reading through entire thread- my 2 cents on overall situation;

1. Considering employee had worked only for a month, i presume there is no critical things she is working on considering she is a new joiner- Drop a note to HR & request for waiver of Notice period on medical grounds & submit all the medical documents as supporting (old -2 yrs back & new, if any) - Companies do provide waiver on medical grounds.

2. No point raising finger on HR , as they work as bridge between employer & employee- i am sure you had explained your situation to best of your interest to HR, but again this is one side of the story- I am very sure that HR/employer will be having their version & rational for taking the steps , they took- having said that these kind of request always go with transparency.

3. not sure, why Loss of Pay (LOP) was not explore in this case- Ideally in these cases LOP option is given to employee to recover & join back... anyways considering exit is already initiated- no point opening another thread on this

Wishing your wife a speedy recovery & take this as a learning for future. All the best to both of you.

From India

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