Can an employer take money from your paycheck if a semi-trailer ceiling didn’t get fixed and a load got rejected?

Had 3 trucks go down that day and couldn’t get to it trying to get the 3 trucks running. However, he or the dispatcher should have sent a mass text message to all drivers that the trailer shouldn’t go to that place if not fixed, yet expected the mechanic to remember to text them after 15 hours of getting trucks up and running that day. They have 1 mechanic and a helper for 39 trucks and trailers.

Asked on September 7, 2015 under Employment Labor Law, Michigan

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

If you were at fault e.g. negligent, or unreasonably careless in causing the load to be rejected, the employer could seek the amount of money they lost from you. However, if you do not voluntarily pay it, they cannot simply take it from your paycheck without your consent rather, they would have to sue you in court and win, proving that you were at fault in causing them a loss and getting a court judgment against you for the money. Of course, if you do not have a written employment contract, you are an "employee at will" and they could simply fire you or suspend, demote, reduce hours, etc. if they feel that you improperly cost them money, since employees at will may be fired at any time, for any reason.


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