Is it legal for my employer to decrease my starting pay rate?

UPDATED: Sep 30, 2022

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Is it legal for my employer to decrease my starting pay rate?

I started out making $13.00 an hour and I switched from a night audit to a regular guest service rep. After working almost a month as a regular guest service rep, my general manager took my pay rate down to $10.00 and I was not notified and I was told at my interview that a regular guest service rep starting pay is $11.50.

Asked on March 4, 2016 under Employment Labor Law, Maryland


M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

So long as your pay rate meets your state's minimum wage, then it is legal to decrease your hourly rate. That is so long as this action does not violate a union agreement or employment contract. Also, your treatment must not constitute some form of legally actionable discrimination. The fact is your employer can set the terms and conditons of the workplace much as it sees fit or deems necessary. For your part, you can either accept this new rate or quit.

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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