Can my boss make me pay lost money back?

UPDATED: Sep 30, 2022

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Can my boss make me pay lost money back?

work for an Heating/AC company in florida. I turned in cash for a job my
helper as a witness. The office girl says I didn’t but can’t prove it. Now
they want me to agree to have taken out of my check till paid. How do I not
know if the office girl didn’t take it?

Asked on July 25, 2017 under Employment Labor Law, Florida


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

You can refuse to pay, in which they case your employer can--
1) Sue you for the money, if they think you took it; to win, they'd have to convince a court by a "preponderance of the evidence" (that it is "more likely than not") that you did steal it, which may be difficult if you have a witness (your helper) supporting your version.
Note that they *cannot* take the money out of your pay without your consent or agreement; the only way for them to legally get it from you is to sue you and win. If they do take the money out without your consent, you could sue them for it and would have a very good chance of winning.
2) However, if you don't have a written employment contract which is still in effect (not expired), you are an "employee at will" and they may terminate you at any time for any reason, without proof--including an unproven belief you stole. So if you don't pay, you run the risk of termination.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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