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Can Kentucky employers withhold their workers’ wages?

| Jun 8, 2021 | Wage & Hour Claims |

A paycheck is more than a benefit to having a job for most Kentucky residents. For many, a paycheck is a lifeline. It is a means to provide for a worker and their family the things they need to survive. Workers count on their paychecks and wages to live and support their loved ones.

When an employer withholds wages from a worker, it can cause stress and problems for the affected individual. While there are circumstances in which employers may rightfully withhold pay from those under their employ, there are a number of wrongful reasons some employers attempt to use to lower the pay to their employees. This post will identify some of those wrongful reasons, but readers should be aware that this post does not provide legal advice.

Impermissible reasons to withhold pay

Employers may not withhold the pay of their employees to punish them for perceived wrongdoing. For example, an employer cannot take rightfully earned pay from an employee if the employee breaks a piece of equipment used at the employer’s facility. Similarly, an employer may not take the pay of a worker if their cash register or box is short of money at the end of their shift, provided that the worker was not the only one using that particular register or box. Employers are limited in when they may withhold the pay of their workers to specific instances under the law.

Addressing wrongful withholding of wages

Losing pay because of a wrongful reason or accusation made by one’s employer can be devastating for a Kentucky worker. When this happens, the worker may struggle to make ends meet and to provide for their family. Workers should understand, however, that they have rights. When an employer wrongfully withholds pay, a worker may be able to seek the compensation they have been denied. An employment law lawyer can help them build a case to be rightfully compensated for what they are owed.