Signing Bonus conflict- I want out early!


Has anyone ever heard of hospitals that will pay you out of your contract, for example you sign a 2 year contract at a hospital for 10K signing bonus, but if you want to leave after 14 months you have to pay back 7.5K.

You want to leave to a new hospital far far away. Will any hospitals pay this for you?


Trying to move back to MN from the East Coast.

TazziRN, RN

6,487 Posts

I've never heard of the recruiting hospital paying a bonus back for a nurse, but I have heard of a recruiting hospital withdrawing their offer when they found out a nurse broke a prior contract a "She may do that to us" attitude.


305 Posts

Specializes in ICU, Agency, Travel, Pediatric Home Care, LTAC, Su.

Just a thought, but maybe you could negotiate for a relocation and sign on bonus in MN and apply that to the current money you would need to pay the hospital back?

Dolce, RN

861 Posts

Specializes in Day Surgery, Agency, Cath Lab, LTC/Psych.

I got a sign-on bonus at one place for $2500 for one year. If I stayed two years I think they would have offered me $4000-5000. In the letter that detailed the contract it stated that if I left or was terminated before the year was over then I would have to return the money, but it would be prorated. So, if I stayed for just 6 months I would have to return $1250. It sounds like a win-win situation until you think about taxes. The biggest tax bracket is for bonuses. So, it doesn't necessarily make sense to take the bonus and just put it in savings in case you quit early because you could end up loosing money on the deal.


168 Posts

Specializes in Case Managemnt, Utilization Review.

The amount should be pro rated. I did it, but never let anyone know that I broke the contract. I just used it as previous work experience. No one ever asked. I had to pay back 7,000 dollars too, but I let them take $1000 every 2 weeks and gave 3 months notice. I lived on very little in the end, but did not have to pay more than $1,000 at once. In the end, it was a mistake to move, but live and learn. I never heard of anyone reimbursing the other hospital so you could get out of the contract.


6,011 Posts

Specializes in ORTHOPAEDICS-CERTIFIED SINCE 89. Has 30 years experience.

Remember a recruiting bonus will have the taxes and such taken out in your name. They will expect ALL of the money back usually, and then you will have to fight the IRS to get the witholding. I don't believe I've ever seen a place that prorated but it would be nice.

RN BSN 2009

1,289 Posts

Maybe find a hospital in your new state that offers a bonus and use that bonus to pay off your old hospital!!


262 Posts

I was paid a "bursary" to take the OR program in our local hospital with the understanding that I would stay 2 years in either casual(prn), PT or FT work depending on what was available. The course was $5000 they paid $2500. I hated it, they were awful to work with, the manager couldn't wait to get rid of me and I couldn't picture 5 more minutes there once the training was over. I left without notice. They met and decided that because it "didn't work out" for either party, I didn't have to pay. It was one of the worst experiences of my life.

I don't know how it works with sign on bonuses, but I would think most places write it into their contract that it is prorated depending on how long you stay. I can't see it being fair to put the bonus in savings when you aren't receiving the full cash value of it with the taxes that are taken off, you end up paying more.

If I was really unhappy, I wouldn't let this stop me from moving on however, as no amount of money is worth working at a job you can't stand.

pagandeva2000, LPN

7,984 Posts

Specializes in Community Health, Med-Surg, Home Health.

I am in a similar contract where my facility paid my way through school and now, I owe back some years. Being a nurse, now, I see that this facility sucks like lemons for the nurses and would take on any opportunity to break mine.

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