Unlawful deductions from wages
Unlawful deductions from Wages – Possible Reasons to Claim
We can help you if your employer has made unlawful deductions from wages. In other words, your employer owes you money for one of the following reasons:
- you have not been paid notice pay;
- you have not been paid overtime that you are entitled to;
- you have not been paid a contractual bonus;
- you have not been paid redundancy pay;
- you have been overpaid and your employer makes unreasonable deductions from your wages to correct an overpayment rather than taking smaller amounts over a period of time;
- you work in retail and you have been docked pay because of cash shortages in the till or missing stock;
When can an employer deduct money from wages?
There are only three circumstances in which an employer can deduct money from wages.
- It is required by law (for example, income tax, national insurance contributions);
- The deductions are authorised in your contract;
- You have provided written consent that the deductions may be made.
Common examples of when an employer is entitled to make deductions from your wages.
Unless your employment contract stipulates otherwise your employer is entitled to take money off your pay in the following circumstances.
- If you are late work for work
- If you take a day off work that your employer has not authorised. For example, if you have not properly booked a day’s leave
- If you are off sick and are not entitled to sick pay (except statutory pay) in your contract
- If you take time off work to care for a child who is unwell and cannot go to school or nursery
- If you are unable to get into work because the roads are blocked by snow.
- If you are unable to attend work because you have to attend to an emergency at home. For example, a flood.
How do you claim back money that your employer owes you?
If, after exhausting all the internal procedures within the organisation for which you work, you have still not been paid correctly then you have two options
Deadline for issuing a claim
Claims to employment tribunals for unlawful deductions must be brought within three months of the last deduction. If the deductions have been ongoing over a long period it is possible to claim for deductions from longer than three months ago providing that the most recent deduction was within three months of issuing a claim.
Mrs Smith works as an assistant to a Managing Director in a marketing firm. The nature of her work means that during the last year she has frequently had to stay late in order to finish work ready for the next day. Mrs Smith’s contract states that she is entitled to be paid overtime once she has worked more than 40 hours a week. Mrs Smith has never been paid overtime and her employer is now refusing to pay her the additional pay to which she is entitled.
Mrs Smith has already submitted a formal grievance to her employer but is still not being paid correctly. Mrs Smith may present a claim to a tribunal for unlawful deductions from wages. Provided that the last time Mrs Smith was not paid was within the three month deadline her claim can include all the outstanding pay for the last year.
Call us now
If, for any reason you believe that your employer has made unlawful deductions from wages and owes you money call us on 0800 014 8727 to discuss your case, or alternatively, fill out the simple form opposite and we will call you back at a time convenient to you.