Can my employer make me use my personal checking account for business transactions?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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Can my employer make me use my personal checking account for business transactions?

My wife works as a case manager for group Home for men with mental handicaps. This operation is run by an out-of-state company and funded by the state of Utah, where we live. This company keeps all of the money that these men earn or obtain from social security benefits or disability, etc. Whenever they want to buy something, large or small, the company writes a check for the exact amount needed to my wife. She then has to take that check to our personal credit union and deposit it into our checking account. Depending on how the purchase is going to be made, she will then either withdraw the amount or keep it in there to make online purchases with her debit card. I worry about this process because there are a bunch of what if’s that could lead to all sorts of legal problems my biggest worry being wrongful accusations of embezzlement. Is it lawful for this company to require my wife to

handle these funds this way? Are there any smart ways to avoid potential allegations of illegal practices with this type of company practice?

Asked on November 7, 2017 under Employment Labor Law, Utah


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

Yes, it is legal for the company to require this: companies can require employees to use their own accounts and/or credit cards for company or businsess expenses.
You are correct about the risks. If they are going to require this, open a separate account specifically for this purpose and use it ONLY for these transactions--none of your money in; no expenses or bills of your paid through it; etc. Keep these transactions wholly separate from your own. If you have to put some of your money in to open it, keep records of that and that should be the only money of yours in it.
Keep excellent records of all transactions, and copies of all check, all invoices or receipts, all emails or correspondence regarding the accounts, etc. Document it all like you are preparing for an IRS audit, with that level of detail and support.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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