Can your employer keep your tips/pay checks if accused of stealing?

Employer kept cash tips upon termination.

Asked on May 1, 2016 under Employment Labor Law, North Carolina


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

No, an employer may not keep any part of your pay, including tips, without your consent or agreement, even if it believes you stole from it--its rights, if it thinks you stole, are to sue you for the money and/or contact the police and look to file charges for theft. You could contact the department of labor to file a wage complaint for the unpaid tips, or to file your own small claims case for the money. Of course, if you do so, that may encourage the employer to take further action, like contacting the police, so you need to think about whether doing this is in your interest.

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