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pay deduction for overpayment error California

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  • pay deduction for overpayment error California

    (name of employer deleted) has overpaid it's employees an approximate total of $58 mil. (they) have sent my wife a letter informing us that they will deduct from my wifes pay due to their past overpayment errors. We have paid taxes on the the money. They have offered a settlement for the net but their due date is the same date that our property taxes are due.

    I am aware of:

    CSEA v. State of California (1988) 198 Cal.App.3d 374 (Unlawful to deduct from current payroll for past salary advances that were in error)

    - and I contacted our local Cal. Dept. of Industrial Relation

    However do these laws pertain to Unions? Does Anybody know anything about the contract or what we should do. If we pay the settlement amount we will have to pay interest on a loan. Seems very unfair!

    Last edited by cbg; 11-13-2007, 11:10 AM.

  • #2
    I'm not sure about unions, but there is an opinion letter for DLSE from 1999:

    This letter indicates that employers can certainly pursue civil action against the employee or former employee.

    It also states that:

    If an employer deducts any portion of an employee's paycheck because the employer previously overpaid....DLSE would view the deduction as unlawful. DLSE would not, however, view the deduction unlawful if the employer and employee have previously entered into a written agreement allowing for deductions...

    If your wife signed an agreement, they can do this. If not, they can't take if from the paycheck, but if she doesn't agree to repay they can take her to court. Whether they decide to go to court will probably depend on how much the overpayment was and how much it's worth to them.


    • #3
      If there is a union, contact them. We would have no way of knowing what if anything the union negotiated regarding this.
      I post with the full knowledge and support of my employer, though the opinions rendered are my own and not necessarily representative of their position. In other words, I'm a free agent.


      • #4
        Good point, ElleMD. I shouldn't even attempt a guess when a union CBA is involved.


        • #5
          Sounds like a class action to me. I'm sure this, with the total amount involved, has lawyers gravitating toward it like flies.
          I don't respond to Private Messages unless the moderator specifically refers you to me for that purpose. Thank you.


          • #6

            Well, we just got off the phone with my wife's District Union Rep. He has informed us that we have to select one of the four options that the district has given us in the "letter". One of the options is "no action at this time", which describes having to pay the total gross with option to appeal. I think we will take that option. The union rep stated that he can't tell us what to decide but that the union is readying a case. I don't have a problem with paying money back, I just think that the circumstances should be reasonable and should take into account tax situations, hardships due to their errors, and more flexible re-payment plans.

            It should be noted: due to the huge beurocracy of the school district, it is very hard to identify whether an employee is getting over paid, under paid, or "RETRO" PAY. You're never able to get answers in a timely manner so you just go on trusting the system and collecting your pay stubs.

            Last edited by cbg; 11-14-2007, 10:00 AM.