How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Patrick, Esq. Your Own Question
Patrick, Esq.
Patrick, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 11272
Experience:  Significant experience in all areas of employment law.
60109343
Type Your Employment Law Question Here...
Patrick, Esq. is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

Hi, I have an employee who repeatedly fails to enter his

This answer was rated:

Hi,
I have an employee who repeatedly fails to enter his time daily on a government contract despite repeated reminders.

Can I place this person on probation that if he continues to violate this rule he will receive 1% pay cut for every violation, and at the fourth violation he will be removed from the company?

Thanks,
Charles
Hello again Charles, good to hear from you.

Yes, probation with a progressive 1% paycut is entirely permissible. The only limitation is that the paycut cannot be applied retroactively. In other words, if this employee fails to enter their time, you can cut their pay by 1% (or whatever amount) from that point in time moving forward, but you can't cut their pay for work they have already completed. The latter would constitute an unlawful deduction from earned wages in violation of the Fair Labor Standards Act.

As always, please feel free to let me know if you have any further concerns.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hi, I am glad I got you to answer my follow up!


It makes sense not to do it retroactively. My plan is to issue a written letter explaining this.


Can you think of any lawsuit this person can bring on my company?


 

"Can you think of any lawsuit this person can bring on my company?"

Implicit in the concept of "at will" employment is the freedom to change an employee's pay at any time, since an employer would be equally free to simply fire the employee and then re-hire them pursuant to the new terms, which would accomplish the exact same thing. There would be absolutely no legitimate basis to sue from what you have described.

My only thought is that you will want to inform the employee in writing each time you cut his pay so he can't say he thought he was still earning at his previous rate.
Patrick, Esq. and 3 other Employment Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

That makes sense. Thanks again! That's all for now.

It was my pleasure to assist. I'd be very grateful if you'd remember to positively rate my service before leaving. Have a great day.