Is it legal for an employer to charge an employee for accepting a counterfeit bill unknowingly?

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Is it legal for an employer to charge an employee for accepting a counterfeit bill unknowingly?

Asked on February 28, 2012 under Employment Labor Law, California

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

The employer may make it a policy or otherwise request that employees make good any losses that they are involved in--including losses from accepting, even unknowingly, a counterfeit bill. The employer may not take money from the employee's paycheck, if the employee does not agree to let it do so; however, the company could elect to terminate an employee who accepted a counterfeit bill, unless that employee has an employment contract or union agreement to the contrary, which agreement limits grounds for termination or otherwise protects the employee's employment. That's because in the absence of such a contract, the employee is an "employee at will" and may be fired at any time, for any reason whatsoever.


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