New hires can be required to sign such an agreement as a condition of hire. If the employer does adopt such a policy, it should be prepared to pay the health insurance premiums for all similarly-situated employees or else face possible charges of discriminatory treatment.
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The practice could be restricted to employees out on health- or family-related absences, or even only to employees out on FMLA leave. Also in the category of a loan or wage advance would be an employer's payment to a third party of a fine or fee on behalf of the employee: "An employer may also count as wages any sums paid to a third party at the request of the employee. The payment by the employer to the third party is equivalent to a loan to the employee, or an advance against his salary. Accordingly, deductions to recoup the outlay must be counted as wages.
Veterans Cleaning Service, Inc. Not included as a loan or wage advance would be the extension of "store credit" to an employee for the purchase of goods or services from the employer. Thus, deductions or set-offs for debts owed to the employer for goods and services cannot take the employee's pay below minimum wage. See Brennan v. Heard , F. Under severely restricted circumstances, the reasonable cost of uniforms and associated cleaning costs may be deducted from wages, or the employee may be expected to purchase clothes that are consistent with a dress code, even if the deduction or cost takes the employee below minimum wage.
If supplied by the employer, it must be clear that such clothes are furnished as a convenience to the employee generic clothing suitable for off-duty use , and that those particular outfits are not a condition of employment or otherwise required for the job see 29 C.
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The cost of specially-branded company clothes may not take an employee below minimum wage. If an employer merely prescribes a general type of ordinary basic street clothing to be worn while working and permits variations in details of dress, the garments chosen by the employees would not be considered to be uniforms. On the other hand, where the employer does prescribe a specific type and style of clothing to be worn at work, e. Other examples would include uniforms required to be worn by guards, cleaning and culinary personnel, and hospital and nursing home personnel.
Another type of deduction allowed from minimum wage is for employee payroll taxes, such as income tax withholding and FICA, as well as any other taxes owed by an employee, but paid by the employer on the employee's behalf see 29 C.
Frequently Asked Questions
A deduction for required payroll taxes FICA and withholding does not need to be authorized by the employee to be valid under the Texas Payday Law. A deduction for other payroll taxes paid by the employer on the employee's behalf would need to be authorized in writing by the employee. Union dues that are authorized by the worker under a collective bargaining agreement may be deducted from an employee's wages even if the wage goes below minimum wage see 29 C.
Deductions for union dues must be authorized in writing by the employee to be valid under the Texas Payday Law.
Allowable Deductions Under the FLSA
Under DOL regulation 29 C. Family Code, Section Civil Practices and Remedies Code, Section There is no limit on the amount a bankruptcy court may order garnished from wages; the bankruptcy trustee takes the previously-mentioned limitations into account when distributing the wages garnished from the debtor.
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The garnishment and wage-attachment exception to the minimum wage law does not include administrative fees associated with handling such matters - see the topics on deductions for interest , administrative fees , and other costs to the employer below for details. This type of deduction does not need to be authorized by the employee to be valid under the Texas Payday Law. Special caution relating to garnishments: Federal law prohibits an employer from discharging an employee due to "any one indebtedness" that results in a garnishment order, i.
While it is true that neither federal nor state law limits an employer's ability to discharge an employee who has two or more garnishments against his pay, it is not recommended to base a discharge on garnishments, since nothing would bar Texas state courts from deciding in a future case that public policy would be best served by forbidding such actions by employers.
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In addition, the DOL has stated that counting a warning for a single garnishment against an employee for purpose of a progressive disciplinary policy that results in the employee's discharge would violate the federal law Wage and Hour Opinion WH, April 28, Finally, the employer may deduct the amount of cash shortages that are provably the result of theft or other misappropriation by the employee, even though such a deduction might take the employee below the minimum wage level; the employer bears the burden of proving that the employee was personally and directly responsible for the misappropriation see Mayhue ' s Super Liquor Stores, Inc.
Hodgson , F. Ordinary cash register shortages, losses of money due to ordinary negligence, and losses due to damage, destruction, or loss of equipment may not be deducted from the wages of employees to the extent that the deductions would take employees below minimum wage.
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