Last Paycheck Laws For Employees In California

Last Paycheck Laws For Employees In California

by Sep 5, 2018Employment Law, Wage and Hour Law

Getting fired from a job, or quitting suddenly due to unexpected and/or difficult circumstances, can be a very emotional and stressful situation. It’s very common for an employee who is fired or quits suddenly to worry about their final paycheck, as they are often counting on it to help carry them through the current or following month.

The laws regarding final paychecks can differ from state to state. Many states stipulate that an employee’s final paycheck be given on the next scheduled payday. In California, however, the laws are much stricter. Last paycheck laws in California also differ depending on whether an employee quits or is fired.

If You Quit Your Job

If you are an employee in California and you quit your job, your employer must provide your last paycheck within seventy-two hours (three days). The exception to this is if you provide at least seventy-two hours notice prior to quitting. In that case, your last paycheck is due immediately.

Additionally, California last paycheck laws stipulate that that “An employee who quits must be paid at the office or agency of the employer in the county where the employee worked.” In some circumstances, however, employees who quit can request that their paycheck be delivered by mail or direct deposit.

Ready To Speak To An Attorney?

Call us now at (707) 529-3200

If You’re Fired From Your Job

In California, if you’re fired from your job, your employer is legally required to provide your final paycheck immediately.

If you’ve been fired due to incompetence, negligence, or for suspected wrongdoing, it’s important to know that your employer can’t make wage deductions for a cash shortage, a breakage or loss of company property that resulted from an employee’s mistake, or an honest accident. These are part of the employer’s cost of doing business.

If Your Employer Withholds Your Check

If your employer doesn’t pay your last paycheck when it’s due, California’s last paycheck laws allow an employee to collect a “waiting time penalty” in the amount of his or her daily average wage for every day that the check is late, up to a maximum of 30 days.

For example, if an employee typically earns $80 a day and the employer is ten days late with their last paycheck, they may be able to collect a penalty of $800.

When To Call A Lawyer

If you believe you have been wrongfully terminated, that your employer has made unlawful deductions from your final paycheck, or is illegally withholding your final paycheck, you should contact an attorney.

At Vonder Haar Law Offices, we have a long and successful record of helping employees recover lost wages and proving wrongful termination. Please contact us today for a free consultation to discuss your case.


At Vonder Haar Law Offices, we offer every client a free phone consultation to discuss their unique situation and determine how we can help. To arrange a consultation, please fill out the adjacent form or call us at: (707) 529-3200.

We provide representation in California State and Federal Courts. We accept most major credit cards for your convenience.

2 + 1 =