What Deductions May My Employer Make From My Paycheck?

In general, deductions from wages are lawful only under the following conditions:

  • The employer is required to do so by law ­ for example, federal and state taxes, Social Security, workers’ compensation, or a garnishment order.
  • The employee has authorized the deduction in writing and the deduction is for the employee’s benefit.
  • Deductions from an employee’s final check (other than those stated above) may be agreed upon orally or in writing. If the final deduction is not to the employee’s benefit, it may not take the employee’s gross wages below minimum wage.

Employers must furnish itemized pay statements to each employee at the time of payment of wages showing all deductions for the pay period, as well as the pay basis, rate or rates of pay, and gross wages.

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