Fired Twitter executives sue Musk over $128m in unpaid severance

There's something wrong with Elon Musk: he keeps attracting lawsuits from people claiming to have been ripped off by him. The latest batch comes courtesy of former Twitter executives who say they've been stiffed on their severance pay, and it adds up to $128m.

The suit, filed on Monday in California, follows a separate legal complaint last year by rank-and-file employees seeking $500m in unpaid severance. "Because Musk decided he didn't want to pay Plaintiffs' severance benefits, he simply fired them without reason, then made up fake cause and appointed employees of his various companies to uphold his decision," the suit alleges. The four plaintiffs in the case include Twitter's former CEO Parag Agrawal, former CFO Ned Segal, former general counsel Sean Edgett and former chief legal officer Vijaya Gadde. Musk fired all of them amid a string of mass layoffs after he acquired Twitter for $44bn in 2022, claiming at the time he did not need to pay the executives severance because they were terminated for cause.

Musk claimed to fire them for gross negligence, etc., meaning he wouldn't have to pay them out, but offered no evidence. The state of affairs at Twitter—overrun by racist, sexist, antisemitic content (some of it posted by Musk himself), denuded of most major advertisers, ineptly rebranded, worth a fraction of what he paid for it—belies Musk's claim that former management was incompetent or negligent.