Email sacking costs Microsoft $9m

Judge says Microsoft deliberately tried to stop employee from using his stock options

A former Microsoft employee has been awarded $9m (£6.20m) by an Australian court after being fired via an email message from the software giant, without using his share options.

Michael Canizales, who had the option to buy Microsoft shares at between $5 and $7 each, was fired in a manner that prevented him using his stock options according to the New South Wales state Industrial Relations Commission.

According to reports, Microsoft's handling of Canizales' dismissal was described as "scandalous" by legal experts.

Judge Russell Peterson said during his ruling Friday "An inference may reasonably be drawn that the conduct of Microsoft was designed to ensure that the applicant did not achieve his 1999 stock options."

Microsoft is reportedly reviewing its next step.

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