What is the state law for the length of time a old employer has to realize a payment mistake?

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What is the state law for the length of time a old employer has to realize a payment mistake?

I recently quit a job my last day was about 5 weeks ago. I received my last pay when the pay period came and my check was for the correct hours. I checked my account a week ago and noticed a deposit of $300 from them. This was a small job in the mall so I had no 401k or any benefits at all. Could you tell me based on state law how long I have to wait for them to notice this mistake before they can no longer take this money back? They have not contacted me about this at all.

Asked on June 5, 2012 under Employment Labor Law, Ohio

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

If the employer were to try to recover the money, it would most likely be considered an action based on an oral (not written) contract--the unwritten agreement between you and your former employer as to the terms and conditions of your work, including what you would be paid. That means that they would have up to 6 years to take legal action (such as a lawsuit) to get the money back. If you actually had a written employment agreement, it would be longer--they could try to recover the money for up to 15 years, I believe.


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