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What if my employer does not issue my final paycheck?

When you leave a job, either because you chose to leave willingly or because you were fired, it is often rather difficult to obtain you final paycheck. Unfortunately, many employers are not eager or motivated to pay you for your last portion of work, and often require some coercion. The good news is that the law is generally on the employee's side in these matters, even if it takes some legal muscle to exercise the law in your favor.

While the specifics may vary depending on your job and how you left it, an employer is usually allowed about 30 days to issue you your final paycheck. Of course, once you leave the position, communication with your employer can become awkward or just practically difficult, so it is usually wise to seek professional legal counsel if you believe that your former employer is avoiding paying you.

If you believe that you have been denied your final paycheck, first reach out to your former employer and notify them of the missing payment. If they fail to respond in a reasonable timeframe, then it is probably time to reach out to an attorney. Sometimes, simply sending the request on an attorney's official letterhead will be enough to inspire your former employer to issue you your final paycheck. The possibility of litigation can do wonders!

However, it is possible that your employer has chosen to be exceptionally difficult and is still not issuing your final paycheck. At this point, you likely want to turn the matter over to an experienced attorney altogether and let them pursue justice on your behalf.

Source: Workplace Fairness, "Final Pay," accessed April 21, 2017

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