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Withholding paycheck until a document is signed Ohio

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  • Withholding paycheck until a document is signed Ohio

    Recently the director of my not-for-profit mental health agency made some changes to the job descriptions for me and a co-worker. These were given to us on a Tuesday. Payday was the following Thursday. On Wednesday, I received an email from the director, stating that the new job description had to be signed by me (indicating full acceptance and agreement) and turned in before I'd be given my paycheck on the following day (Thursday). I had no issues with the job description, so I signed it. Implied in my director's communication was the subtle message that if we didn't agree with the changes to our job description, our checks would be withheld until either we capitulated and signed, or went through a lengthy process to negotiate changes. Is withholding the paycheck pending signing a document such as this legal? Would I have any recourse if I'd wanted to negotiate changes and my check was withheld?

  • #2
    Not having read this document and any previous documents, this will be a soft answer. Generally speaking employers are allowed to make changes to the compensation structure on a go-forward basis only absent contractual language to the contrary. Ohio is not my state but the chances that OH requires the employee to sign something to change the compensation structure on a go forward basis is unlikely. The employer is not legally allowed to hold back a check to coerce the employee to agree to changes, but the employer also legally (on a go-forward basis) also does not need the employee's permission to just go ahead and make the change (absent a contract to the contrary)..
    "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away".
    Philip K. **** (1928-1982)

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    • #3
      Response

      Thanks for the response. The document I was asked to sign was merely a job description, and my compensation was not affected by this. The job description merely entailed new duties and requirements for the position I was assuming. At issue was whether my employer could legally withhold my paycheck for work performed over the previous 2 weeks, until I signed my job description.

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      • #4
        No, he could not. But since that didn't happen, it's rather a moot point.
        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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        • #5
          Not completely relevant but terminating someone for reefusing to sign acknowledgement of a job description is legal....
          I find that the harder I work, the more luck I seem to have.
          Thomas Jefferson

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