Japanese automaker Honda has asked hundreds of employees to refund some of their bonuses after claiming they had paid too much.
The company gave workers at the Marysville Honda Motor Co. plant in Ohio nine days — until Sept. 22 — to return some of their bonuses, often up to hundreds of dollars.
A memo sent to staff asked them to choose how they wanted to repay the money, with an option to repay the money up front or take the money out of their future payments and bonuses; failing to respond would result in the money being automatically deducted from their pay.
Honda has confirmed that it has asked employees to repay some of their bonuses, claiming it was legally justified, but declined to disclose how much the bonuses were and how much it asked employees to repay, NBC4 reported.
“Earlier this month, Honda made bonus payments to its employees, some of whom overpaid,” the company said in a statement.
“Compensation issues are a sensitive issue… we are working quickly on this point to minimize the potential impact on our employees.”
“That’s half our mortgage”
However, an employee’s wife said her husband was asked to repay nearly 10% of the bonus. She asked to remain anonymous, telling NBC4 the return amount was significant: “That’s, you know, a car payment. That’s half our mortgage… That’s two, three weeks’ worth of groceries. That is a lot of money for us.”
She also added that her husband had told her this was not the highest bonus he had received from the company. It is unclear why the bonus was overpaid.
Last year Honda Motor saw sales fall by more than 4% and profits fall by almost a quarter. In May, the company reported its lowest operating profit in four years and declined to provide a forecast for the remainder of the year.
This story was originally on Fortune.com