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Is it legal in Maine to take an employees last check? Maine

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  • Is it legal in Maine to take an employees last check? Maine

    In July I went on maternity leave and had my manager take my pto just to pay for my health and dental benefits so I could be out at least 6 weeks. He messed up the first check and only paid my dental. I brought it to his attention, he said he didn't know and would fix it. I had my baby the following week and didn't return to work until the first week of sept. I gave notice at the begining of Oct. as I could not make the numbers work with the cost of working and what I would/ or would not be bringing home financially. Yesterday I went in to get my last stub and I received a zero check. My bank shows a check going in and then back out. On the stub it shows everything going to my health deduction. Is it legal for him to do that? There was no notice given to me... In fact he was not there when I went in and he knew I was on my way- I had called to make sure it was there so I wouldn't be wasting a trip. Please advise as I am stuck and not sure what to do.

  • #2
    If that's what the arrears was to keep your insurance active for the period in question, yes, the deduction can take the entire net check, since you did authorize that deductions be made for medical insurance. The fact that the employer screwed up and did not make the proper deductions for XX period of time does not mean a separate authorization is required to collect the back contributions.

    Was your leave FMLA?

    When did the coverage cease?
    Last edited by Pattymd; 10-23-2009, 06:30 AM.
    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
      I will defer to Patty on Maine specific law (not my state). I can say that the medical plan deductions are legal under federal law (FLSA). The feds normally require that non-tax deductions respect minimum wage, but have an exception related to "for the benefit of the employee" deductions. Medical plan deductions falls under that exception. Past that, the feds do not even have any employee approval or notification requirements. States often (but not always) have more friendly rules then do the feds on deductions, but most, maybe all states, would also tend to consider this type of deduction to be legal. CA for example generally has the most employee friendly rules in the country, and they would also consider this deduction to be legal.

      The one thing that might not be legal is that while the employer can take 100% of the net, they cannot pocket the normal taxes (FIT, FICA, whatever Maine requires). They cannot fail to report the wages to IRS and the state.
      "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away".
      Philip K. **** (1928-1982)

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