Originally Posted by moisezz24
Can I dock employees' pay when they miss work?
Q: Can I dock an employee's salary for missed work days without jeopardizing his or her "exempt" status?
A: The Federal Fair Labor Standards Act does allow docking, depending on the duration of the absence — and the cause:
If the employee is absent a day or more for personal reasons, you may deduct from his or her pay.
If the employee is absent a day or more due to sickness or disability, you may make deductions, provided that you have a policy or practice of providing compensation for lost salary caused by sickness and disability, or if your company operates under a state or private sickness and disability insurance law or plan.
If the employee receives a full-week disciplinary suspension, you may deduct from his or her pay. You may deduct for suspensions of less than a week only if they were imposed in good faith for violating rules of major significance.
You may not deduct for absences due to court appearances or military leave (although you may offset any witness fees, jury duty pay, or military pay received by the employee). If the employee is absent for part of a day:
You may deduct pay if the employee is taking leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act.
You may require the employee to substitute accrued vacation or sick pay. If no accrued vacation or sick leave is available, however, you may not reduce the employee's pay.
Overall, you want to avoid excessive salary docking because it undermines the whole idea of having employees on a salary and makes them seem more like hourly workers.
NOTE: This column provides general information only. Consult your accountant, tax, or legal advisor about your particular situation.