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Can we recoup training costs by withholding pay from an employee’s last paycheck?

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in Compensation and Benefits,Human Resources

Q. We’ve started requiring employees to repay (through payroll deduction) training costs if they quit or are fired within one year. Are we OK legally?

A.
If you mean that you’re deducting the training costs from the employees’ last paycheck, don’t do that without express written authorization from the employee.

Under the Pennsylvania Wage Payment and Collection Law, only certain deductions from pay are authorized. For any others, an employee must give written authorization.

Also, for nonexempt employees, it is not legal to make deductions from pay that would effectively lower the employee’s compensation to less than the minimum wage.

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