Illegal Wage Deductions in Virginia

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Sometimes Virginia employees are surprised to see a significant difference in their net wages and actual pay. While some wage deductions are acceptable under the law, some items may be considered illegal wage deductions in Virginia. If you believe your employer is unfairly docking your pay, you should consult with one of our experienced wage theft attorneys at the Spiggle Law Firm. We could analyze your case and fight to preserve your rights.

Legal Wage Deductions

Some of those types of legal deductions that may be taken from an employee’s wages include meals, housing, and transportation that are owed to the employer. Deductions may also include taxes, socially subsidized student loans, child support, and alimony.

Those who work at a restaurant and are fed may also see some deductions from their wages. If this is done in Virginia, the employee has to be aware and give permission to do so.

Illegal Wage Deductions

Under Virginia and federal wage laws, some deductions are illegal. Title 3, the Consumer Credit Protection Act, limits the amount of an employee’s earnings that may be garnished every week. No more than 25 percent of disposable earnings can be taken out of a check every week.

Other types of illegal deductions include those that occur when employers do not give notice. Virginia law states, “No employer shall require any employee, except executive personnel, to sign any contract which provides for the forfeiture of the employee’s wages for time worked as a condition of employment.” This means that the employee has to agree to it in writing. These deductions can include property damage, cash shortages, tools, and uniforms.

How Employees Should Address Illegal Deductions

An employee can address an illegal wage deduction by going to the Federal Department of Labor and reporting it. A person can also pursue it on their own with the help of an attorney. It is basically wage theft, so there are the same types of penalties and opportunities for recovery that exist in any other wage theft case.

Compensation Available in a Wage Theft Case

Compensation and other damages could be available in a wage theft case. Oftentimes, with illegal wage deductions in Virginia cases, there are two components to the damages. First, there is returning the employee the lost wages and then there is a civil penalty on the employer. That results in further damages to the employee who had their wages taken away from them.

The amount of compensation can vary depending on the situation, but in Virginia, it can result in double the wages to the person. A person can get back what they were supposed to be paid, as well as a penalty on top of that, which is called liquidated damages.

Discuss Virginia Illegal Wage Deductions With a Lawyer

If you believe your employer engaged in illegal wage deductions in Virginia, you should reach out to an experienced employment lawyer at the Spiggle Law Firm. Federal and state law provides protection to workers, and if your employer violated these laws, you could be entitled to damages. Call today to schedule a consultation or click here for a free online case review.