Hernandez files grievance for his guaranteed pay, signing bonus


In the aftermath of Aaron Hernandez’s arrest for murder and release from the Patriots, the NFLPA believed that Hernandez would be unable to recover his otherwise guaranteed base salaries for 2013 and 2014.

The NFLPA now believes otherwise.

The NFLPA has filed on Hernandez’s behalf a grievance seeking payment of $1.323 million in guaranteed 2013 base salary, along with $1.137 million in guaranteed 2014 base salary.  The union also seeks payment of $500,000 for a guaranteed 2014 workout bonus.

The argument is simple; the amounts were fully guaranteed, Hernandez was cut, and Hernandez should still get the money.

The Patriots will argue, we believe, that the guarantees applied only to terminations made due to injury, skill (i.e., perceived lack of it), and the salary cap.  Because the Patriots cut Hernandez pursuant to paragraph 11 of the standard player contract, which permits termination of employment when the player “has engaged in personal conduct reasonably judged by Club to adversely affect or reflect on Club,” the guarantees evaporate.

Again, the NFLPA agreed with that interpretation in June.

The grievance was filed on the same day that Hernandez filed, also through the NFLPA, a grievance seeking recovery of the final installment of his $12.5 million signing bonus.  The $3.25 million isn’t due until March 14.  Citing the refusal to pay the guaranteed base salary for 2013, the NFLPA has opted to seek a ruling on the $3.25 million right now.

That’s an argument Hernandez is more likely to win.  The money was earned when he signed the contract in August 2012.  The only potential argument against paying him hinges on whether he is charged with — and convicted of — the July 2012 murders of Safiro Furtado and Daniel Abreu.  If he signed the contract knowing that he had murdered two people, there’s likely a potential legal argument that, if successful, would void the deal.

As to Furtado, Abreu, and Odin Lloyd, their families should promptly hire counsel and file suit demanding that any proceeds from these grievances (up to $6.21 million) be held in escrow pending the outcome of the wrongful death lawsuits against Hernandez.  If they don’t, any money recovered by Hernandez could be long gone by the time the civil litigation ends.

He has a good chance the get the $3.25 million.  The other $2.96 million arising from guaranteed salaries and workout bonuses will be much harder to recover.

Our guess is that the NFLPA opted to pursue both prongs in the hopes of making it more likely that Hernandez will at least get the $3.25 million.

Regardless, the families of the men he allegedly killed should be the ones who get that money.  If/when “allegedly” is replaced with “actually.”

59 responses to “Hernandez files grievance for his guaranteed pay, signing bonus

  1. Odin Lloyd files grievance to reclaim life stolen by Hernandez. Unlikely to be successful.

  2. When you’re in Hernandez’s situation, this is the equivalent of worrying about the pattern of your curtains when your house is ablaze.

  3. I would like to file a grievance as a Patriots fan against Aaron Hernandez.

    The Patriots should tell Hernandez to GO POUND SAND !

  4. Gotta love big business (nfl/kraft)… hiring a murderer to put the community at risk in the name of enriching a group of billionaires.

  5. If/when “allegedly” is replaced with “actually.”

    I get more worried by the day that this will not happen. Now it’s come out that his fiance threw the box containing the murder weapon into a dumpster and that she ‘doesn’t remember’ where. If they haven’t found that gun by now, it’s long buried in trash.

  6. primenumber19 says: Oct 16, 2013 3:00 PM

    Hernandez will get paid, and then lose it all in civil suits filed by the families of his victims.

    I think everyone other than the Patriots would be perfectly fine with that outcome. Every penny he has should go to the families of the victims, with a tiny bit left over to ensure that Hernandez’s kid has enough money to survive for a few years (I’m not saying get rich, but it’s not that baby’s fault that Hernandez is scum).

  7. Nobody “refuses” AH when he’s dusting.. I’ll bet the Patriots pay this clown. Of course the lawyers and victims will end up with the $ while AH serves his time.

  8. Would the union be at risk for action against it if they didn’t file? What is their responsibly to Hernandez, which his lawyers would enforce as they need him to have money to pay them.

  9. Does paragraph 11 mention anything about multiple murders? Even if he wins and gets the money,it’s already spent on attorneys and civil suits. I just hope someone decent is going to step up and raise his daughter since his “fiancee” will probably be doing time as well.

  10. Not surprised the patriots are trying to cheat him out of his money. They’ve got plenty of practice cheating the league/fans of 3 super bowls with an asterisk next to them.


  11. Sounds simple to me – has anybody else ever been cut for personal conduct that had a guaranteed contract? If so, were they paid?

    if there’s a precedent I’m thinking they would have to follow it.

  12. hernandez lawyers need to know how much money he has available so they can do the math on how long to drag the case on and overcharge him with fake expense/travel receipts.

  13. I know this guy is a total loser, but he did work for the money. He should be paid. If you worked 40 hours and then got fired the next Monday, wouldn’t you still expect to have a paycheck there on Friday to go pick up? Kind of the same thing.

  14. And what does Hernandez plan on doing with that money if he wins? All the while he’ll be taking it like a man in prison.

    The NFLPA should be ashamed of itself. But, of course, unions know no shame.

  15. This may be a little “out there”, by why doesn’t the union let the legal side of things play out first? If you’re innocent, then sure, we’ll help you get your salary back. If you really did knock off THREE people (or were in any way involved), sorry ’bout ya. But what do I know? That’s probably too much common sense for DeSmith to process all at once.

  16. If “guaranteed” means what I think it means, then he gets the money. Cuz that’s what it means.

  17. The Unions are obligated under law to defend their “dues paying members”. If they don’t they can be SUED.

    I’m sure they wish this would all just go away, but they are obligated.

  18. Hmmm, but there is a chance he could see that money by the time he’s a 50year old man.
    Gosh! NFL fans, You get to live life once, Just once. Stay safe and be smart and live life to the fullness. Stay out of trouble

  19. Hey patsfansknowitall and doctorrustbelt. You do realize how ignorant you both sound, right? I really question your intelligence so I won’t bother explaining things to you.

    That said, any money he would receive should be attached by the victims in this case: his baby daughter for having a murderer for a father and the Lloyd family.

  20. Let us not forget…. the new england patriots hired murderer aaron hernandez… NOT the unions.

  21. @patsfansknowitall —- i’m not a Patriots fan at all, not in the least bit but man do i think it is tremendous how much the fact that the Patriots won 3 Super Bowls still irritates you. it’s almost 10 years since the last one, might be time to let it go already. great stuff though!

    “patsfansknowitall says:
    Oct 16, 2013 3:21 PM
    Not surprised the patriots are trying to cheat him out of his money. They’ve got plenty of practice cheating the league/fans of 3 super bowls with an asterisk next to them.”


  22. in the end, as long as he does not wind up with the $$ in his own pocket, then it should follow the letter of the law……if it can be put in escrow pending civil suits, then I don’t have a problem

    the pats have some of their own failings in this one…….to a degree, they knew what they were getting themselves into when they put up the big contract….they are responsible for their own mistakes

  23. This was expected all along. If the Pats have to pay him, so be it. But they will hold off paying him as long as possible and make it as difficult as possible – that is if they will have to pay him at all.

    …just as it should be.

  24. “Gotta love unions!!!”


    Yeah, because trying to get $7.25/hr workers another 25 cents is pretty damned similar to a multi-millionaire football player accused of murder…

  25. @m2karateman says:Oct 16, 2013 3:26 PM

    “The NFLPA should be ashamed of itself. But, of course, unions know no shame.”

    It’s their responsibility to work on behalf of any dues paying NFL player. You should be ashamed of yourself for not knowing that, and spouting off in such a pious, ignorant manner.

  26. Money going into the hands that it SHOULD go into? Yeah the guys handling the money will never let that happen. It was a nice thought though. Maybe when we can figure out how to turn on the govt we can actually figure out how to get the govt to work, and one day in the post-2100 that money will finally be traced and reinserted into the handes of the rightful descendants. We just have to wait for the computers to figure it out for us since we are too greedy to figure out how to come up with the right answer.

  27. To those of you who know nothing of labor law, you should just shut up. As was stated earlier, by law, the union is obligated to file on behalf of its’ dues paying members. It’s called Duty of Fair Representation. To not file may create a precedence where a member who is owed the money might be denied. You follow the process because it effects every member not just one. To the knucklehead poster who whined about unions getting more money than a person could get in the free market, go pound salt. I’m a union member and I’ll put my work record up against yours anytime. If you free market types had your way,everyone would be working for $1.25/hr. Except, of course, for you.

  28. What a coincidence! It turns out that the money
    the Patriots owe him is the exact amount of money that his legal defense will cost! Isn’t that amazing!

  29. I agree with you Mike, wholeheartedly on this one.

    The families/estate should be awarded any potential wrongful death suit money from this pot and any other pot that Hernandez owns. Holding in escrow pending legal outcomes is the only way to ensure that happens.

    The Union is doing its due diligence in representing their member, but it would have been okay if they didn’t……….at least not so hard.

    Hernandez’ lawyers need to defend him as best they can……………That’s the system.

  30. When he gets convicted of that earlier murder, the one with the car in his uncle’s garage, the Pats will then sue Hernandez and hopefully the NFLPA to recover every cent they ever paid the guy.

  31. The Patriots knew when they cut him that this problem would surface. All they had to do is wait until he didn’t show up for work. They can’t have it both ways. And it is about the money on both sides. It’s always about the money.

  32. The Patriots drafted the original contract…..Hernandez signed it! This is on the Patriots for offering this contract to a player with a questionable background!

  33. Can Brady sue because thanks to Hernandez (and Gronk’s injury) he has no tight ends to throw to, and their offense was based on a lot of 2 tight end formations.

  34. Anyone else wish Judge Smails was handling this matter? I would love to see him say to Hernandez

    “You’ll get nothing and like it!”

  35. Lets review.. Despite overwhelming evidence

    OJ went free.
    Kacey Anthony went free.

    And Hernandez will be catching passses in the NFL inside of 3 years.

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