A company paid an employee for his work done in cryptocurrency. However, after the price of the cryptocurrency skyrocketed 700%, the employer wants the coins back, offering to pay the employee in U.S. dollars instead.
Employer Wants Crypto Back After It Rose 700%
Marketwatch published a letter to The Moneyist columnist, Quentin Fottrell, Monday from someone asking for advice about crypto payments he received from his employer. The Moneyist is a service that provides answers to all sorts of dilemmas, and Fottrell is the publication’s personal finance editor as well as The Moneyist columnist.
The letter was signed “Crypto Confused,” who explained that he did some business development work for a tech startup “on a contract basis.” The company is still trying to generate its first dollar in sales, he noted.
“The purpose of the contract was to generate sales and it included a commission component, but the understanding was that I would bill hourly for cold calling and emailing people, generating proposals, setting up meetings, participating in and leading pitches, etc., with the goal of generating revenue,” the letter explains, adding:
In August 2020, I received payment for the contract work in cryptocurrency. Since then, the prices of cryptocurrency have skyrocketed. As of this moment, the crypto that I received payment in has gone up 700%.
As the price of the cryptocurrency the startup paid the employee skyrocketed, the CEO of the company wrote the employee. He explained that “Since you did not generate any revenue for the company and are not currently doing any follow-up work, please send back all of the crypto received in August 2020. You can invoice the company for the hours worked in USD,” the letter states.
Crypto Confused was not sure what to do and is asking for advice about whether he should return some of the cryptocurrency for the hours worked. He also did not specify which cryptocurrency he received.
Replying to the letter, Fottrell insisted he should not return any cryptocurrency. “No. Alas, no. No, thank you. Absolutely not. Ask me again in 2121,” he wrote, emphasizing:
Your employer should abide by the terms of his contract … Even if the contract said you could be paid in either dollars or crypto, asking for the salary back is an entirely different matter.
Fottrell added that “any efforts to break that contract with guff about how employees didn’t do X or Y, which means they should be paid one way or another, are sharp practice at best and open him up to a lawsuit at worst.”
Do you think the employee should return some of the cryptocurrency received to the employer? Let us know in the comments section below.