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Opinion

Can I have my bonus please?

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It's bonus time ? and not everyone's going to be as lucky as Goldman Sachs trader Driss Ben-Brahim, who has just landed a reputed £30 million.

Indeed banks aren't nearly so generous to most of their staff at this time of year. Some bankers may even find themselves out of a job and excluded from the bonus pool completely.

But, as is usual in these moments, help is at hand from the lawyers. One is Gareth Brahams, employment partner at London firm Lewis Silkin, who expects another burst of activity this year from bankers nursing grievances.

A typical problem, says Brahams, occurs if a bank gets rid of someone before bonuses are distributed, or just before the end of the working year. A lot of contracts say bonuses will only be paid to those who've been on board the full year.

"Bankers work primarily for their bonus and not for their salary," says Brahams. "It's asking for trouble to make someone work for 11 months and then not pay them."

It's worth making a fuss about this ? 90% of disputes will be settled out of court.

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