Missouri has laws protecting employees from having their paychecks unfairly limited or delayed. If you are having legal issues or disputes with your paycheck, you can rely on these laws to enforce your rights. Your employer also has responsibilities regarding your check, which they have to meet under these laws. Violations of paycheck laws can lead to legal liability, and may require legal action.
When Must Paychecks Be Sent Out According to Missouri Law?
Whether you are classified as an hourly employee or a salaried employee, you must be paid a certain number of times each month. The laws of Missouri require employers to pay the majority of their employees at least semimonthly.
Employers do, however, have the freedom to pay executive, professional, and administrative people on a monthly basis. This also includes well people who earn at least part of their wages through commission, on a monthly basis.
What Happens to My Paycheck If I Am Fired in Missouri?
In the state of Missouri, if you are terminated or if you choose to quit, you should be given your final paycheck immediately. If you are not given your final paycheck when you leave the company, then you are required to send a written request for the owed wages to your former employer, and they have seven days from that point to hand over the paycheck. If your employer fails to pay you within that 7 day period, then they will owe you additional wages for every day that you are not paid for up to 60 days.
Missouri has no laws requiring paid sick or paid vacation leave. If an employer wants to offer paid leave benefit, then it is up to them to provide it to you. If you have unused paid sick or vacation days, it is completely dependent on what is in your employment contract; it may also depend on what your employer’s policy is as to whether those unused days will be paid to you when your job ends.
Can My Paycheck Be Garnished Under Missouri Law?
Wage garnishment allows an employer to set aside some of an employee’s paycheck, to be used for payment of debts. The employer may send the amounts directly to the court; in some cases, they may send the funds to a third-party agency, who will process the payments on their behalf.
Wages can be garnished to pay debts that you owe, but a creditor cannot typically do this automatically. In order to garnish your wages or paycheck amounts, your creditor has to go to court and get a court judgment against you.
However, this is not needed to garnish wages for unpaid child support, unpaid student loans or owed taxes. Your employer can deduct your wages for damaged company equipment or for cash register shortages, so long as the deduction does not lower your wages below minimum wage.
Can I Recover a Withheld Paycheck Under Missouri Law?
If your employer is withholding your paycheck, then you are entitled to fight for your paycheck. There are two basic ways you can pursue your owed wages. First, you may file a complaint with the Missouri Division of Labor Standards. Second, you may sue your employer in a court of law in order to get your wages that you are owed.
In most instances, this will take the form of a wage and hour lawsuit, especially if there are missing amounts or if the paycheck is partial or incomplete. In these types of lawsuits, the court will review documents such as pay stubs and hour logs to determine an appropriate remedy for the employee. In most cases, there may be issues with specific items such as wage rates, hours worked/logged, overtime pay rates, and other issues.
What Else Should I Know About Missouri’s Paycheck Law?
Under both federal and Missouri law, your employer can deduct your wages to cover the cost of company uniforms or equipment. However, they cannot take so much that it lowers your wages below Missouri’s minimum wage (as of January 2019 it is $8.60/hour and eventually $12.00/hour by 2023). Before hiring you, an employer can also request that you take medical tests necessary for the job for which you may be expected to pay.
Additionally, Missouri employers are prohibited from discriminating against their employees or future employee candidates. For example, they are not allowed to withhold paychecks based solely on the person’s age, sex, race, religion, national background, political affiliation, or other characteristics.
If discrimination has occurred, it may be necessary to initiate legal action with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). The EEOC will launch and investigation into the matter and may prescribe an appropriate remedy for the affected employee or employees.
Where Can I Find the Right Lawyer for Issues with My Paycheck in Missouri?
A Missouri employment lawyer can provide assistance and guidance if you are having problems receiving your paycheck. Not only can they answer your questions with regard to payments, they can also represent you in a lawsuit against your employer if needed. Your attorney can provide legal research and guidance to assist you with your legal claim.