Is it legal for an employer to only partially pay employee wages when they can’t make full payroll?

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Is it legal for an employer to only partially pay employee wages when they can’t make full payroll?

question says it all

Asked on October 9, 2017 under Employment Labor Law, California

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

No, it is not legal: under the law, employees must be paid for all work done or days worked, regardless of the employer's financial condition. This is not legal grounds to not make full payroll. 
Again, though, that is the law. Practice or reality may differ. If the employer does not have enough money to make payroll, they cannot make payroll: a legal obligation does not make money appear where there is none. So if the employer truly does not have the money to fully pay its staff, the fact that they are supposed to will not enable them to do so.


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