Can an employer confiscate personal property due to not wearing a name tag?

Today I came into work and I had forgotten my name tag. My manager asked me where it was and afterwords she asked me if I had my car keys. I said no and that they were in the car. Then she asked if I had a cell phone. I also said no. She then asked if I had my wallet on me which I did. I took my wallet out not really knowing what was up, this is when she took it and tossed it into the desk. After she threw it in the desk she made a new name tag and said I’d get my wallet back when I was done and gave the tag back. Is this even legal?

Asked on July 26, 2012 under Employment Labor Law, Minnesota

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

What you describe is not even remotely legal; in fact, it may be a form of theft, and the manager could potentially face criminal liability. If you forgot your name tag, you could sent home; demoted; transferred to a different job; have your pay cut; be written up; be suspended; even be fired--but your manager may not take away your personal property.


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