Is it legal for my company to pay its employees without giving a pay stub along with the check?

Ethan Stone

Ethan Stone

by Ethan Stone, Stone Business Law

First, a quick but important clarification: I’m not your lawyer and this answer doesn’t establish a lawyer-client relationship. I’m giving a generic answer to a generic question to educate the users of this site. The information below is general in nature and should not be understood as a substitute for personal legal advice.

The answer to this question depends on state law.  In California, and many other states, the answer is no.

California Law requires an “itemized statement” including the following:

  • gross wages earned
  • total hours worked by the employee (except for salaried “exempt” employees)
  • the number of piece-rate units earned (for workers paid on a piece-rate basis)
  • all deductions
  • net wages earned
  • the dates of the pay period
  • the employee’s name and the last four digits of her/his social security number or employee ID  number
  • the employer’s name and address
  • an itemization of the applicable hourly rates in effect during the pay period and the corresponding number of hours worked at each hourly rate by the employee

Given the numerous state and federal rules and regulations pertaining to paying employees, withholding taxes etc., most employers prefer to use a payroll service, such as ADP, Ceridian, Insperity and Paychex (there are many others and I’m not endorsing any of them), to deal with their payroll and generate the paystubs.

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