Can the Employer Legally Cut an Employee’s Pay?

by Evil HR Lady on February 23, 2015

I was working as a dental hygienist in a dental office. I was getting paid $28 an hour. I found another job that is full time and giving me all my hours so I let my boss know that I found another job.

So when I went to pick up my last pay stub she had changed my hourly rate to minimum wage $8 an hour. I worked 47 hours, so basically I worked for free. I never signed anything and my last two pay stubs have my hourly rate on them.

To read the answer, click here: Can the Employer Legally Cut an Employee’s Pay?

{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

Jordan February 23, 2015 at 5:47 pm

Very informative post. I had no idea it was completely illegal to cut pay without informing the employee. Though really, I didn’t think people would do that in the first place! Thanks for sharing.

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Anonymous February 23, 2015 at 10:12 pm

My previous employer cavalierly imposed a 20% pay cut upon all staff ( no heads-up, no negotiation ) twice within a 2 year time span. I finally had a major blow-out with upper management ( it’s a family-owned business anyway. Go figure ) and was let go.
They probably felt a level of guilt so they kept things “kosher” on the surface.

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Roger Rabbit February 24, 2015 at 5:13 pm

Many years ago a legal but still nasty version of this happened to my wife Jessica here in the US.

She worked in a branch office and one day a corporate bigwig parked right out front in his shiny brand new European sports car with built-in mobile phone and built in fax machine. He entered the office wearing a bespoke suit and his normal custom shoes over his deep tan and proceeded to tell everybody that they would be getting a pay cut. Jessica was pissed and asked if he was getting a pay cut too and he gave a weasel answer that meant no.

So yes it was legal, but it was done in such a bad way.

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Evil HR Lady February 25, 2015 at 8:40 am

That is the wrong way to do it. Also, loved your use of the word “bespoke.” Awesome.

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Anonymous February 26, 2015 at 6:01 am

On another occasion, I was laid off by another employer claiming financial difficulties ( again ). On my way out I noticed pretty much everyone in upper management were getting new company cars ( BMWs, full-size SUVs ). “Postal” came to mind, still does.

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Rakhi February 25, 2015 at 9:53 am

May I know about paid leave and earned leave?

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hayling March 10, 2015 at 12:49 am

I can’t believe employers have the gall to do this!

Then again my SO’s paychecks from a former employer bounced a few times. He got in the routine of going to the employer’s bank first thing Saturday morning, cashing the paycheck, and then depositing it in his bank account immediately. And of course he got a new job soon after that!

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Lisa Adkins December 7, 2016 at 11:25 am

My employer cut my wages from $7.75 an hour to $7.00 an hour without my knowledge, is it legal to do that in Missouri? And is there anything i can do about it? I think it’s bulls**t.

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