"An inadvertent administrative error" meant that some of the 1,400 Microsoft laid off recently received overpayments in their severance packages. The company's asked for the money back, making this a hat trick of HR Kops komedy.

"We ask that you repay the overpayment and sincerely apologize for any inconvenience to you," says the letter, which spells out what happens if you pay back the dough in or out of the same tax year in which it was received. Reading between the lines, they threaten recipients with a big tax hit if they don't give it back.

Someone posted a copy of the letter on TechCrunch, and CNET went to Microsoft. The company confirmed the letter's authenticity but declined further comment.

Let's see. Fire a bunch of people, check. Screw up their sev package. Check. Go begging for the cash back. Check. See that embarrassing demand posted on the Interwebs. Check. Funny that the ones responsible for this clusterfuck are in fact the ones who kept their jobs.

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Microsoft Wants Refund from Some Laid Off Workers [CNet via Evil Avatar]