If I as laid off, how long does my past employer have to pay me my last check?

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If I as laid off, how long does my past employer have to pay me my last check?

It was due today but they claim they do not have the money to pay me.

Asked on February 15, 2012 under Employment Labor Law, Pennsylvania

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

In Pennsylvania, as in many states, when you are terminated or laid off, you should be paid your final paycheck by or before the next regularly scheduled pay day. (The employer is allowed to pay earlier.) Not having the money to pay you is not a legal defense to the obligation, though as a practical matter, IF the company is telling the truth and has no funds, there may be no way to get paid. That said, if the business is operating at all, it is very unlikely that it does not have the money to pay you; also, if the business is not a corporation or LLC, you could sue the owner(s) directly. Your main recourse, if not paid, is to sue, if you deem it worthwhile; you could sue in small claims court, where filing fees are low and you could act as your own attorney.


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