Examples of Massachusetts Wage Act Violations
Some Wage Act violations are obvious- for example, simply not being paid for weeks or months at a time, or never receiving your final paycheck after your job terminates. Others are not so obvious, and many people are surprised to learn that a payment practice violates the Wage Act, whether they are the employer or the employee. Below are some examples.
Late payment of final paycheck: if you are terminated, you are supposed to receive your final paycheck on the day of termination. If you resign voluntarily, you are supposed to receive it in the next regularly scheduled payroll.
Payroll cycles that do not comply with the Wage Act: the Wage Act requires payment within 6 days after the end of the prior pay period. This means if a pay period ends on a Sunday, you should be paid no later than the following Saturday.
Incomplete payment of final paycheck: if the paycheck does not include all of your accrued, unused vacation time, or does not include any commissions earned prior to termination, it is incomplete and the holding back of the unpaid balance is a Wage Act violation.
Wage deductions: if wages are deducted for anything beyond taxes, employee benefits (i.e., health, dental, etc.) or court-ordered garnishments, this too could be a Wage Act violation.
Commission payments: commissions are wages under the Wage Act, and are due like regular wages when they are "earned." This one can be tricky- when commissions are earned is dependent in part on the company's commission policy, which could allow them to delay payment. If there is no policy, commissions are considered earned when the customer agrees to buy the product or service, regardless of timing of payment or deliver. Once earned, payment is subject to the same timing requirements as any other wages.
Learn more here about the Massachusetts Wage Act.
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