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LawTalk
LawTalk, Attorney
Category: California Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 27889
Experience:  I have 30 years of experience in the practice of law, including employment law and discrimination law.
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January 3rd I had surgery for a work related injury and was

Customer Question

January 3rd I had surgery for a work related injury and was to be receiving 2/3 my normal salary from the workers comp insurance company. I was due pay from my employer for Jan1 and 2nd - for some reason my employer auto-deposited my personal account for the first half of the month (~$ 1,700). I then could not cash the workers comp check because it would have resulted in fraud. We had a discussion on Jan 30th, where I asked for them to send me a written document stating what they want me to pay and by when (Employer is reluctant to put anything in writing - person in charge doesn't see why that is necessary). Also after communicating with the insurance adjustor I received permission to deposit the workers comp check. I then received the email detailing the amounts I will repay for the overpayment. However the amount they want is beyond what was deposited into my personal accounts (~$2,800). There is amounts towards HSA, FSA, State taxes, federal taxes, Social Security, Medicare, SDI, Health, dental, vision, life insurance premiums, 401K, Roth 401K. I'm in a precarious position because I have cashed the workers comp check (~2,000).

I'm trying to formulate a written response back to my employer and the workers comp insurance company. What do I put in these written documents?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: California Employment Law
Expert:  LawTalk replied 1 year ago.
Good morning,

I'm Doug, and I'm very sorry to hear of your situation. My goal is to provide you with excellent service today.

You are not obligated to repay the gross wages. The employer withheld the taxes---state, federal and FICA, though they did not pay those over to the state and feds yet, because they only pay quarterly. You are not obligated to pay gross and then seek a refund next year on your tax return for the overpayment of taxed by your employer.

As for the health and vision live and any other benefit programs that they pay, presuming those are paid first of the month, if you are an employee the first of that month they are obligated to pay those charges. Even if you to quit, die or be eaten by a dinosaur at mid-month, those benefits paid on the first would be yours to keep. The employer may not seek to claw back the benefits paid for simply because there is a change in employment status sometime during the month. The contributions to the retirement plan are handled in the same manner. They are payable on the first of the month, and they are yours---regardless of when your employment status changes. The only thing that the employer may seek to recover is the overpayment of actual wages to you---the amount which represents the pro rata wages that were accidently paid to you.

Under CA law, it is illegal for the employer----without written permission from you---- to deduct anything from your wages, other than for taxes, and your contributions to benefits that you have previously agreed to. So there is no worry that when you do return to work that they will deduct money from future paychecks.

Explain all of this to HR and ask that they break out only the net wages that were paid to you and included in that $1,700. The amount they seek back should be approximately $1,550.00.

You may reply back to me using the Continue the Conversation or Reply to Expert link if you need any clarification of my answer; and if you do, I ask that you please keep in mind that I do not know what you may already know or with what you need help, unless you share that with me.


Please remember to rate my service to you when our communication is completed, so that I will be compensated for my time in providing you with the information you requested. I will be happy to continue further, and to assist you until I am able to address your concerns, to your satisfaction.

I wish you the best in 2013,

Doug
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

I have been informed that Medical, dental, vision are due at end of month, and that I am to mail them a check at the end of each month. I had planned on sending the the checks seperately to reduce confusion. Could I hold off on sending them the benefit check until they agree that I'm only sending them back the net?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.

I have been informed that Medical, dental, vision are due at end of month, and that I am to mail them a check at the end of each month. I had planned on sending the the checks separately to reduce confusion. Could I hold off on sending them the benefit check until they agree that I'm only sending them back the net?

Expert:  LawTalk replied 1 year ago.

Hi Thelma,

I am here and will respond to your follow-up. It is not necessary to post your follow-up 2 times. I need a few minutes to prepare my follow-up answer for you. Thanks,

Doug

Expert:  LawTalk replied 1 year ago.
Good morning,

If medical and dental are due at the end of the month, then it would not have been possible for them to have paid them by mid-month when they claim to have. They are making no sense.

As to sending separate checks, yes, I think that would be a good idea.

You may reply back to me again, using the Reply to Expert link, if you have additional questions.

I wish you the best in your future,

Doug
LawTalk, Attorney
Satisfied Customers: 27889
Experience: I have 30 years of experience in the practice of law, including employment law and discrimination law.
LawTalk and other California Employment Law Specialists are ready to help you
Expert:  LawTalk replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your positive rating of my service, Thelma. It has been my pleasure to assist you and I hope you will ask for me on JustAnswer should a future need ever arise.

Please feel free to bookmark the following link so you can request me to answer any future legal questions you may have:
http://www.justanswer.com/law/expert-lawtalk/

Thanks again, and have a great weekend!

Doug

When you receive your Customer Satisfaction Survey from JustAnswer, please do rate me highly (8-10). It benefits my ability to assist you and other customers, and would be tremendously appreciated.

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