"I'm a waitress at a busy seafood restaurant. Last week a bunch of kids came in and ran up a huge bill, and left without paying. My boss took the cost out of my paycheck. Is she allowed to do that?"
There are very few deductions allowed from an employee's wage in Massachusetts (other than those required by law). They include things like lodging and meals (although very limited in both cases), lost merchandise, lost tools, short cash, purchased products, etc. - each of which is conditioned upon certain circumstances.
Some unlawful payroll deductions often made by employers include:
- Losses, shortages and breakages, such as loss from a cash register, or loss or damage to an employer's goods, machinery, or tools;
- Drug/alcohol tests;
- Background checks;
- Uniforms, without obtaining a Uniform Deposit Waiver;
- Safety equipment/protective clothing;
- Medical/Physical examinations;
- Photographs of applicant or employee;
- Business expenses; and
- There are special rules for deductions related to meals and lodging.
If you believe your employer has made improper deductions from your paycheck, contact us
This information is not a do-it-yourself guide to resolving employment disputes or handling employment litigation. While some may find this useful for understanding the basic issues and their legal context, it is NOT a substitute for experienced legal counsel and does not provide legal advice. Please contact the team at Gordon Law Group to discuss your specific case.