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Garnished Wages Florida

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  • Garnished Wages Florida

    Can employer withhold airfare expense from final paycheck? I frequently traveled for the company and purchased airfare with corporate travel card and now the company is deducting the expense for unused plane tickets from my final paycheck. I live in Florida and classified as exempt employee.

    Thank you in advance for your response.

  • #2
    Just to confirm, the tickets you charged were for company business and not personal, correct?

    What kind of paperwork/agreement did you sign when you received the company credit card? Did you sign anything agreeing to be liable for expenses that were charged but not actually used for company business? (companies would do this so that if the employee charges personal items, they have a way to recoup the $s or so that a disgruntled employee couldn't run up $1000s in debt right before leaving an employer) A lot of times we sign things and don't read them and only notice when they are enforced later. It is possible that you signed something that stated you would be responsible in a situation like this and if they have that signature, you might be out of luck. If you didn't sign something like that, are there any policies on how much notice must be given and what happens to prepaid travel expenses if adequate notice is not given? In some states, expenses are totally outside of wage law beyond the fact that they can't cause an employee's wages to drop below minimum wage.

    I would politely ask the employer for their backup on how the deduction was made and where you were notified in writing that this would be deducted. If they fail to provide it, I would file a wage claim and let them prove then that they had to right to deduct it based on the information that you politely asked for. Without that, I suspect you would win the wage claim because the employer should never deduct from wages something that they don't have written authorization to do so (taxes, benefit deductions, garnishments, etc) A smart employer will have paperwork to backup any deduction taken.

    Good DH travels some on business and I do understand the worry of owing for expenses that were 100% due to the travel.


    • #3
      Florida doesn't prohibit the deduction and federal law does not specifically either. Business travel expenses need not be reimbursed at all and if the ticket was yours to with as you pleased, it makes sense to charge you for it. Whether you chose to get a refund or change it is up to you.
      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
        Filing a wage claim in Florida would be pointless - Florida does not have a state DOL and this kind of deduction is not illegal under Federal law.

        It would have to be a small claims action.
        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.


        • #5
          Just for your info:

          Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. Leo Buscaglia

          Live in peace with animals. Animals bring love to our hearts and warmth to our souls.


          • #6
            I am going to give a slightly different answer. It is true that there is no federal requirement to reimburse business expenses BUT there is a federal requirement that most deductions do not adversely impact federal minimum wage and overtime requirements. Part of the reason one of the other answers suggests taking a hard look at any related documents you signed. Never a bad idea.

            Also, what the other answers said.
            "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away".
            Philip K. **** (1928-1982)


            The forum is intended for informational use only and should not be relied upon and is not a substitute for legal advice. The information contained on are opinions and suggestions of members and is not a representation of the opinions of does not warrant or vouch for the accuracy, completeness or usefulness of any postings or the qualifications of any person responding. Please consult a legal expert or seek the services of an attorney in your area for more accuracy on your specific situation.