You should be paid for the work you do and be paid on time, as well. If you are having issues with receiving your complete paycheck on time, then you should carefully read the Massachusetts Wage and Hour Laws that protect you in this instance.
Your employer has to follow Massachusetts’ laws on paychecks, and you have right to ensure that they adhere to these laws. If you believe that there has been a violation with regards to your paycheck, legal remedies may be available for you.
When Must Paychecks Be Sent Out Under Massachusetts Law?
According to Massachusetts law, the majority of employees are entitled to receive their paycheck on a biweekly basis. The only employees that may be paid less frequently than bi-weekly are executive employees, professional employees, agriculture employees, and administrative employees. Agricultural workers may be paid monthly, and all other exempt employees may be paid semi-monthly or choose to be paid monthly.
What Happens to My Paycheck If I am Fired in Massachusetts?
Your last paycheck should be given to you immediately if you are fired from your job. If you quit, then you should be paid by the next scheduled payday or on the next Saturday if the next day is not a scheduled payday, but the weekend instead.
It is up to your employer to decide if they will give you paid vacation days or sick days in Massachusetts. However, if they do provide this benefit, then they have to pay you for any unused days when your job ends because this paid time off is considered to be part of your earned wages.
With that being said, your employer is allowed to set a cap on the amount of unused days you can accrue. However, your employer cannot make you agree to anything that would result in forfeiture of your earned paid time off.
Can My Paycheck Be Garnished Under Massachusetts Law?
Wage garnishment refers to a particular type of arrangement where an employer receives authorization to collect some an employee’s paycheck, to be used for paying the employee’s outstanding debt.
This is common in situations such as those involving child support or student debts. The employer can either send the funds directly to the court or they may use a third-party agency who will process the funds for them.
A creditor may be able to garnish your wages for a personal debt, but they may need to get a court order first before taking action. A court order is not needed for garnishment in cases of unpaid child support, owed taxes, and defaulted student loans. Creditors pursuing all other types of personal debt must obtain an order from the court before they can take payments to pay off the debt directly from your wages.
There are very few instances where your employer can garnish your paycheck for work-related expenses. They may automatically take money when it is permitted by law, such as deducting money for taxes that you will owe for that year, or if you specifically ask them to take out the money.
An employer can also dock your pay for showing up late if you work in a manufacturing or retail establishment, but only if the amount matches the amount of time that you were late. Your employer cannot deduct any money from your paycheck for ordinary business costs, such as equipment that you may use or supplies that you may need.
Can I Recover My Withheld Paycheck in Massachusetts?
If your employer will not provide you with your paycheck, then there is nothing under the law to prevent you from pursuing it. You can get your owed paycheck either by suing your employer or by filing a wage complaint with the Massachusetts Office of the Attorney General’s Fair Labor Division.
If your employer has withheld a portion of your paycheck, it may be necessary to file a wage and hour lawsuit. This is especially true if the issue is ongoing or has been repeated several times. Wage and hour lawsuits allow the court to review your documents to determine what type of remedy is appropriate for you in your situation.
Most of the times, partial or incomplete paychecks are the result of errors, omissions, or negligence on the part of the employer. Issues may involve the employee’s hours, wage rates, overtime pay, benefits, tips, and other aspects of their payment.
Does Massachusetts Paycheck Laws Offer Protection from Employment Discrimination?
Massachusetts employers are prohibited from discriminating against their employees. This means that they cannot withhold their paychecks or benefits solely based on their age, sex, race, religion, national origin, and other characteristics.
They also cannot discriminate based on a person’s pregnancy status or based on a legally-recognized medical condition. This also applies to persons who may be candidates or applicants for employment.
Where Can I Find the Right Lawyer to Help Me With My Paycheck Issue in Massachusetts?
A Massachusetts employment lawyer can be an immense help in pursuing a past due or inadequate paycheck. If you are having issues with your employer and your paycheck, it may be necessary to hire a lawyer. Your attorney can provide guidance, legal advice, and representation during your case.