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Joseph, Lawyer
Category: California Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 5299
Experience:  Extensive experience representing employees and management
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Our bank charges us $35 to place stop payments on our payroll

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Our bank charges us $35 to place stop payments on our payroll checks. Our CEO wants to know if we can pass this charge on to employees when they lose their check and request a new one? Could we put this authorization to charge them the fee when they complete our Stop Payment Request form that they are required to sign and return to our Corporate Payroll office?

Also, what can we do a about terminated employees whose uncleared checks are now stale dated and need to be reissued? Can we deduct the Stop Payment fee are part of the reissuing of the check?

We have locations in California, Illinois, New Jersey, Connecticut and Alabama so the "rules" might be different for each State.
Well, I can only respond via California law, since this is in the California Employment Law section.

And, unfortunately, the answer is no. You cannot charge employees for bank fees, including stop payment fees. Doing so would be an unauthorized and illegal deduction from wages under California law, as deductions can only be made for very narrow purposes. This includes stop payment fees on checks that now need to be reissued to past employees as well.

See here:

I hope the information is helpful.

Please let me know if you have follow up or clarifying questions.

I suggest that you repost this question in the regular employment law section for answers to the other states. California has, by far, the most employee-friendly laws on the books, so it's likely that those fees could be charged to employees in other states.
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