New York labor law previously made it very difficult for employers to seek repayment from employees for paycheck advances or wage overpayment.
Beginning November 6, 2012, employers in New York will have the full backing of the amended Section 193 of New York Labor Law to seek repayment for:
- Overpayment of wages (when overpayment resulted from clerical error)
- Discounted parking or transportation passes
- Fitness center and gym membership dues
- Cafeteria, vending machine, pharmacy, and gift shop purchases
- Schooling-related expenditures (tuition, room/board, fees)
- Daycare expenses
- Payments for housing (specific to non-profit hospitals)
Previously, New York employers could not make such deductions from employees’ wages – even with employee consent. Employers must continue to follow the requirements of Section 193, which outlines how employers must notify and gain consent of their employees to pursue these repayments.
Employees in New York may need to learn the lesson of Tennessee Ernie Ford about how not to “owe your soul to the company store.”