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Lawful deductions from final paycheck? (PA)

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  • Lawful deductions from final paycheck? (PA)

    I am planning to give my two weeks notice to my current employer on Monday. Last week, the company sent me to a training course at their expense. The total cost to the company was about $1400. I was also paid for the three work days I was at the training course. It is stated in the employee manual that costs of this kind will be deducted from an employees final paycheck if they quit before 1 year subsequent to the expendature. I have signed a form agreeing to the HR policy.

    The PA Labor and Industry page states:
    What Can Be Deducted From My Paycheck?

    If you have borrowed money from a third party, you can give the employer written permission to deduct payments from your earnings. If your employer has loaned you funds, s/he can deduct the amount from your earnings as long as you have given written authorization. Of course, normal tax deductions must be made. The thing to remember regarding deductions from your paycheck is that you must give written authorization to your employer to make such non-tax related deductions. It is not valid to sign a "blanket" authorization at the time of hire to cover any future deductions. Further, as a rule, deductions cannot reduce your gross pay below minimum wage, and the deductions must be to the benefit of the employee.


    It seems that my signing the HR policy falls under a "blanket" authorization as described above, and the employer cannot legally deduct any costs relating to this course. Regardless of the answer, I plan to pay them back. I just want to know so I can adjust my tone accordingly.

  • #2
    I agree with your interpretation. Maybe they would set up a payment schedule? All legal, like a promissory note. If you show good faith in this offer, they're more likely to approve it.
    I don't respond to Private Messages unless the moderator specifically refers you to me for that purpose. Thank you.

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    • #3
      Thank you for looking at this.

      My plan is to find out if they are going to reimburse me for vacation, which they are not required to do by law. My personal opinion is that vacation is part of my compensation package.

      If they do plan to pay for unused vacation (even if I only have one day accrued), they are more than welcome to deduct the three days I spent at the course from my vacation days as well as charge me for their expenses incurred from the course, even if it works out considerably in their favor.

      If they do not plan to pay for unused vacation, I will dig my heels in a bit more, and consider filing a complaint with PA L & I.

      It is not about the money, but principles rather.

      Thanks again.

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      • #4
        Regarding vacation, if the company has a policy of paying out accrued vacation at termination, the state laws require they do so.
        I don't respond to Private Messages unless the moderator specifically refers you to me for that purpose. Thank you.

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        • #5
          Your personal opinion that vacation is part of your comp package, is not binding on the employer.

          PA law requires only that the employer follow their policy. If they have a policy or practice of paying out unused vacation, they must do so. If they do not, they needn't, whether you consider it part of your compensation package or not. The law does not change because of your opinion.
          The above answer, whatever it is, assumes that no legally binding and enforceable contract or CBA says otherwise. If it does, then the terms of the contract or CBA apply.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by cbg
            Your personal opinion that vacation is part of your comp package, is not binding on the employer.

            PA law requires only that the employer follow their policy. If they have a policy or practice of paying out unused vacation, they must do so. If they do not, they needn't, whether you consider it part of your compensation package or not. The law does not change because of your opinion.

            You have a firm grasp on the obvious.

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            • #7
              And your opinion is your opinion. Only.
              I don't respond to Private Messages unless the moderator specifically refers you to me for that purpose. Thank you.

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              • #8
                It has been my experience that some posters require the obvious to be spelled out to them. You appeared to be one of them.
                The above answer, whatever it is, assumes that no legally binding and enforceable contract or CBA says otherwise. If it does, then the terms of the contract or CBA apply.

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