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. If your employer is deducting your wages for any other reason, then you probably have grounds to claim against them under the Wage Act.
The attorneys at Gordon Law Group, LLP, who are based in Boston, represent workers across the country who find themselves questioning their paystubs and are concerned about illegal deductions. If you have questions about illegal payroll deductions in Boston or in another location, you can trust Gordon Law Group, LLP to help resolve your concerns. Our attorneys are frequently cited among the best employment lawyers in the nation.
Understanding Massachusetts Payroll Deduction Law
Your employer is allowed to make certain deductions from your pay for things such as Social Security, FICA, state and federal income taxes, union dues, and health insurance premiums.
However, sometimes an employer tries to get away with making an unauthorized deduction from wages for an expense they cannot require an employee to pay. Things that fall under this category include items that benefit the employer and not the employee. 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.
Employers who are guilty of violating the Wage Act, whether intentionally or mistakenly, may have to pay harmed employees triple damages.
Choose an Experienced Massachusetts Compensation and Employment Attorney
The skilled attorneys at Gordon Law Group, LLP are committed to helping employees at all levels of their company fight unlawful deductions from wages. When you choose us, you can be confident your attorney will fight for your rights and will seek to hold your employer accountable for their actions.
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.