Employer taking half my pay during an open case

UPDATED: Oct 2, 2022

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Employer taking half my pay during an open case

My employer deposited my check into the wrong account not belonging to me. A few days later money appeared in my account from my employer. I was under the impression that they located the funds and placed it into my account from pay day. I was later told that the money was placed in my account as a loan paycheck and I was to pay it back. I was never given the option to accept those funds nor was I told that the funds that was placed in my account was not mine to begin with. If that was the case I would have rejected the funds. My employer then proceeded to take half of my next paycheck without my permission. Can my employer make those moves without my permission or me signing off on it? What are my rights as an employee?

Asked on August 15, 2019 under Employment Labor Law, New Hampshire


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

No one, whether employer or not, can force anyone to accept or repay a loan without consent. 
You had the right to be paid: if the employer deposited the money in the wrong account, that is their problem and they can take steps (e.g. sue the recipient) to get it back but still must pay you. Employees must be paid for the work they do.
And finally, employers cannot withhold any part of a paycheck without employee consent (or a court order, such as an order for wage garnishment). 
All in all, the money they gave you was your pay, to which you were entitled, not a loan, to which you did not agree, and they could take recapture any part of it by withholding your pay without consent. You are entitled to the full amount. Contact your state department of labor to file a complaint if you and the employer cannot work this out.

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 AttorneyPages.com 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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