Can my employer force me to pay for training and not reimburse me?

UPDATED: Dec 21, 2011

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Can my employer force me to pay for training and not reimburse me?

I am a salaried employee. Can my employer make training mandatory on a Saturday (every Saturday for 3 months)? On top of that they are requiring that we purchase materials for the course to the tune of $200. They are saying this is not optional. They’ve even offered to deduct the money from our paychecks to help us pay for it because they know it’s a lot.

Asked on December 21, 2011 under Employment Labor Law, Georgia


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

Unfortunately, much--if not most--unfair behavior is not illegal. An employer may make weekend training a condition of employment, and fire anyone who does not do it (indeed, it might be considered termination for cause, since you are not following employer policy or instructions). They may require employees to purchase their own training, etc. materials and do not have to reimburse them. The only limitation is that hourly employees must be paid for all hours worked (and the training is work for this purpose), and employees who are not exempt from overtime must be paid  overtime as appropriate.

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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