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Unpaid Commissions

Please also see my Contracts article.

Unpaid commissions can be common law or statutory law. In the common law, if a person owes you commissions, then you have a breach of contact action to collect them. If the amount is small, you can file a small claims court case.

Sometimes the statutes will provide some help.

Here is the key statutory law of unpaid commissions in Missouri: RSMo 407.912

Commission to become due, when–termination of employment, all commissions due, when.

407.912. 1. When a commission becomes due shall be determined in the following manner:

(1) The written terms of the contract between the principal and sales representative shall control;

(2) If there is no written contract, or if the terms of the written contract do not provide when the commission becomes due, or the terms are ambiguous or unclear, the commission shall be paid when the product or service is delivered and accepted by the purchaser or the principal receives satisfaction in full;

(3) If neither subdivision (1) nor (2) of this subsection can be used to clearly ascertain when the commission becomes due, then the commission shall be due on the date the principal accepts the order and receives satisfaction in full, unless the custom and usage prevalent in this state for the parties’ particular industry is different, in which event such custom and usage shall prevail.

2. Nothing in sections 407.911 to 407.915 shall be construed to impair a sales representative from collecting commissions on products or services ordered prior to the termination of the contract between the principal and the sales representative but delivered and accepted by the purchaser after such termination.

3. When the contract between a sales representative and a principal is terminated, all commissions then due shall be paid within thirty days of such termination. Any and all commissions which become due after the date of such termination shall be paid within thirty days of becoming due.

(L. 1989 S.B. 192 ยง 1 subsecs. 2, 3, 4, A.L. 2005 S.B. 211)

AND you might win some extra damages, and attorney fees (or have to pay the winner’s attorney fees): RSMo 407.913

Failure to pay sales representative commission, liability in civil action for actual damages–additional damages allowed–attorney fees and costs.

407.913. Any principal who fails to timely pay the sales representative commissions earned by such sales representative shall be liable to the sales representative in a civil action for the actual damages sustained by the sales representative and an additional amount as if the sales representative were still earning commissions calculated on an annualized pro rata basis from the date of termination to the date of payment. In addition the court may award reasonable attorney’s fees and costs to the prevailing party.

***** END OF ARTICLE ***** Missouri Employment Law

Maintained by Attorney Phil Willoughby
Founded by Tim Willoughby, Esq. (1959-2013)

Phil is a Missouri employment lawyer who is licensed to practice in Kansas and Missouri, and primarily takes cases in Saint Louis and Kansas City. He is a member of the Missouri Bar Association and Kansas Bar Association. Additionally, he has practiced in the United States Federal Courts of Missouri in St. Louis and Kansas City. He has also practiced in the Kansas Federal District Court in Kansas City, Kansas.

Missouri Bar Website (To view the directory of lawyers).

Phil Willoughby, Attorney
Licensed in Missouri and Kansas

Kansas City Office:
9800 NW Polo, Suite 100
Kansas City, MO 64153
Google Map of 9800 NW Polo, Kansas City, MO 64053

St. Louis, MO Office:
Appointment Only

St. Louis: 314-729-7750
Kansas City: 816-454-5600
Fax: 816-454-3678

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