If I work at a car dealership, can it make an automatic deduction to cover the expense of a coffee machine?

It recently purchased a Starbuck coffee machine for both employees and customers to use. We have been informed that all employees will have $5 per check ($10 a month) deducted automatically to cover the cost. We were not asked, nor did anyone give verbal or written consent. Can it legally do this?

Asked on July 16, 2015 under Employment Labor Law, Georgia


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

No, they cannot to this: employers may not make any deductions from paychecks (other than income tax withholding, UI, social security, etc.) without employee consent. They are free to have a policy that if you don't contribute, you can't use the coffee machine and can't even offer coffee to your customers, which probably makes $10 a month a bargain, but if you're willing to suffer that consequence, they can't force you to pay.

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