ou might not believe it, but some employers think they can hold your last paycheck hostage, or not pay it at all. They have no legal right to do that, and there issomething you can do about it.

In most states, your employer must pay you by your next regular payday. If your employer fails to provide you with your last paycheck on time, this is probably a wage violation. If you’re in this situation, you need to contact an employment attorney immediately!  (That’s us…)


For example, in New York, employers are required to give you a final paycheck for all of your unpaid wages. It doesn’t matter whether you quit or were fired. Your final paycheck needs to include all of your earned, unpaid wages. The only deductions that can be made are those authorized under New York law, such as taxes, garnishments, and withholdings the employee has authorized in writing. Any and all deductions must be “for the benefit of the employee.” An employer cannot (usually) deduct money for items such as unreturned keys, unreturned laptops, or other company property. New York specifically prohibits deductions for breakage, fines, or penalties for being late or quitting without notice, spoilage, cash shortages, or fines for misconduct. Many states have similar provisions. Contact Us about your specific situation.

Sometimes employers think they can demand that you sign papers before they give you your paycheck. The simple truth is that your employer can’t legally withhold your paycheck. If they try, you should contact a lawyer who knows this area of the law.  (It is what we do here at AndersonDodson, P.C.)

If you’re unable to get your final paycheck from your employer, you can file a claim with the New York Department of Labor. If your employer does not make your final check right, they may be subject to penalties! You can also potentially sue your employer, and get your wages PLUS additional payments.

It is a good idea to consult an employment lawyer FIRST if you are in any of these situations. We will listen to your specific circumstances, and let you know the best course of action, and the likely results. Be aware that there are time limitations on filing some employment-related claims, so it’s important to take action as soon as possible. If you would like more information or if you need assistance recovering your final paycheck from an employer who doesn’t want to pay up, we can help.

Please Contact Us today to discuss your options!