changing pay to minimum wage

Is it true....

That you can reduce an employee's pay for the last two weeks to minimum wage...for various reasons...

I have a "friend" who owns his own company. The employee damaged some property and/or performed horribly and therefore caused some damage. So he paid the guy at minimum wage for those last two weeks. Said he went to a hearing with DOL and won. I want to say I've read this before, but can't find it anywhere.
Our employees sign a PA form that states their rate of pay, so I'm thinking this would be a major headache for us....but might come in handy one day should the need arise.
Have any of you engaged in this practice?


  • 3 Comments sorted by Votes Date Added
  • I've never heard of this before, but I guess it could be a GA state law. The only thing I can think of is a situation where the EEs final pay was reduced by the amount of damage he caused, but they still ensured he got paid minimum wage. If he never signed anything stating what his pay will be, I guess it could work...

    Sorry I couldn't be more helpful!
  • I understand that in some cases you can recover certain costs as long as you don't let the pay of the employee drop below minimum wage. It sounds like that is what happened here.

    In many cases damaged property is just part of the cost of doing business, but if you have an employee who is obviously negligent (like coming to work drunk and then hopping on the forklift just for fun when they are not licensed and driving it through the wall) then you can make a better case for recovery. Also, in some states you can have a new employee sign something giving you permission to reclaim the costs of anything they damage. The main thing is not to let their wages drop below minimum wage for federal purposes. The rest is more likely determined by state law and the kinds of signed agreements you have in place.

    Good luck!


  • A former employer reduced final check wages to minimum wage for anyone who quit without notice. I wasn't wild about it, but I successfully defended the policy to Missouri Wage and Hour on two occasions.
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