In an employment setting with 3 employees is it legal to cut only 1 employee’s hours to half to compensate for shortages in cash drawers?

UPDATED: Sep 30, 2022

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In an employment setting with 3 employees is it legal to cut only 1 employee’s hours to half to compensate for shortages in cash drawers?

I haven’t had a shortage in my drawer in quite some time and what few times I have, I either paid out of pocket myself or was nowhere near the amount to justify equaling the amount of hours she’s cutting from me. Not to mention, that I managed catch a glimps of her paperwork after she got off the register one day and she herself was $30 short. So how is any of this fair?

Asked on July 15, 2017 under Employment Labor Law, Kansas


M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

While your employer cannot deduct any shortages from your paycheck without your permission, it is free to cut your hours, for any reason or no reason at all. That is unless doing so violates the terms of an employment contract or union agreement. Also, it must not constitute some form of legally actionable discrimination. So if only your hours are being cut due to your race, religion, age (over 40), disability, gender, etc., then that would be illegal. Otherwise, not all employees need be treated the same or even fairly.

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