Legal To Sell The Company Without Telling Us?


I was approched by a stranger of another company saying his company bought out my company. He said he was told from his supervisor. When I asked about it, no one will talk to me at all. Is this legal? The new company would result in a severe pay cut, and I don’t even know if they would be taking us on as employees.




Dear Worried:

A company is not required to tell employees about business plans, including selling the company or buying another company. Obviously it’s the right thing to do, but they are not required to do it.

Look at how many times companies have gone out of business and employees don’t find out until they show up for work one day and the doors are locked!

Your boss may have been told not to discuss it until the paperwork has gone through. Or, there could be some other reason for not releasing the information. Maybe the supervisor from the other company wasn’t supposed to say anything. Or, it could be that there are state regulations involved and those have to be complied with by both sides.

One way you might find out is to use your computer search engine to see if there have been newspaper articles about your company and the company that you think is purchasing it. Or, you might re-contact the person who told you about it and ask them if they know more about it.

I think you should also ask your own boss again, telling him how worried you are about the future. Maybe, if he can tell you anything, that sincere request will have an affect. He is probably as worried as you are!

You may not want to continue to work there if you think your pay will be reduced, but you would probably want to wait and find out for sure before you take any action. However, now might be the time to consider what else is available, as well as to be closely watching your finances, just in case. I realize that is a scary idea! But, probably we would all be better off if we spent and saved money as though we might not have much more of it starting next month.

Keep in mind that everyone you come in contact with may potentially have some input about who stays and who goes. So, every day is like a new job interview as far as appearance, attitude and work product goes. That is true no matter what industry you work in or what job you have.

I hope this comes out OK for you and that you will be able to stay upbeat and strong for your own sake and the sake of your family. These are the kinds of situations that can really test a person. It might be that you are worried for no reason. At least you can take the approach that you want to be prepared for anything. That’s a good idea for all of us!

If you have the time and wish to do so, let us know what happens.

Best wishes!

Tina Lewis Rowe

Tina Lewis Rowe

Tina had a thirty-three year career in law enforcement, serving with the Denver Police Department from 1969-1994 and was the Presidential United States Marshal for Colorado from 1994-2002. She provides training to law enforcement organizations and private sector groups and does conference presentations related to leadership, workplace communications and customized topics. Her style is inspirational with humor.