What is my recourse if premiums were deducted from my paycheck but no insurance was given?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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What is my recourse if premiums were deducted from my paycheck but no insurance was given?

I recently discovered that my employer has been taking deductions from me for our company’s separate eye insurance program. I had told them to drop me out of it years ago, and I just assumed they had done so. Well, they stopped my eye insurance, but they kept taking out the money for it. I finally noticed it was still coming out, and has been for years. I’m not entirely positive, but I’d say for at least 10 years, maybe more. I just never looked at the breakdown of medical deductions, only the total. Do I have recourse to recover the money they’ve taken out? I know I can get them to stop, but I want to get the money back they’ve taken, even if it was from years ago. I wanted to know where I stood, legally, before I went to talk to them.

Asked on November 15, 2017 under Employment Labor Law, Missouri


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

Yes, if they took money out without providing you the coverage, they must return it: there was no legal basis to deduct your money without providing coverage. You will not be able to go all the way back for 10 or more years, however; you will be limited to the statute of limitations period, which is likely 5 years or less depending on the exact grounds you bring the matter (e.g. breach of contract; civil theft; etc.), since most statutes of limitation (time periods within which you must bring legal action) are 5 years or less in your state.

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