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§21-5-3. Payment of wages by employers other than railroads; assignments of wages.

(a) Every person, firm, or corporation doing business in this state, except railroad companies as provided in §21-5-1 of this code, shall settle with its employees at least twice every month and with no more than 19 days between settlements, unless otherwise provided by special agreement, and pay them the wages due, less authorized deductions and authorized wage assignments, for their work or services.

(b) Payment required in subsection (a) of this section shall be made:

(1) In lawful money of the United States;

(2) By cash order as described and required in §21-5-4 of this code;

(3) By deposit or electronic transfer of immediately available funds into an employee’s payroll card account in a federally insured depository institution. The term “payroll card account” means an account in a federally insured depository institution that is directly or indirectly established through an employer and to which electronic fund transfers of the employee’s wages, salary, commissions, or other compensation are made on a recurring basis, whether the account is operated or managed by the employer, a third person payroll processor, a depository institution, or another person. “Payroll card” means a card, code, or combination thereof or other means of access to an employee’s payroll card account, by which the employee may initiate electronic fund transfers or use a payroll card to make purchases or payments. Payment of employee compensation by means of a payroll card must be agreed upon in writing by both the person, firm, or corporation paying the compensation and the person being compensated; or

(4) By any method of depositing immediately available funds in an employee’s demand or time account in a bank, credit union, or savings and loan institution that may be agreed upon in writing between the employee and such person, firm, or corporation, which agreement shall specifically identify the employee, the financial institution, the type of account, and the account number: Provided, That nothing herein contained shall be construed in a manner to require any person, firm, or corporation to pay employees by depositing funds in a financial institution.

(c) If, at any time of payment, any employee is absent from his or her regular place of labor and does not receive his or her wages through a duly authorized representative, he or she is entitled to payment at any time thereafter upon demand upon the proper paymaster at the place where his or her wages are usually paid and where the next pay is due.

(d) Nothing herein contained may affect the right of an employee to assign part of his or her claim against his or her employer except as in subsection (e) of this section.

(e) No assignment of or order for future wages may be valid for a period exceeding one year from the date of the assignment or order. An assignment or order shall be in writing and shall specify thereon the total amount due and collectible by virtue of the same and, unless otherwise provided for in subsection (f) of this section, three-fourths of the periodical earnings or wages of the assignor are all times exempt from such assignment or order and no assignment or order is valid which does not so state upon its face: Provided, That no such order or assignment is valid unless the written acceptance of the employer of the assignor to the making thereof is endorsed thereon: Provided, however, That nothing herein contained may be construed as affecting the right of a private employer and its employees to agree between themselves as to deductions to be made from the payroll of employees.

(f) If an employee of the state has been overpaid wages, including incremental salary increases pursuant to §5-5-2 of this code, an employee may voluntarily authorize a written assignment or order for future wages to the state to repay the overpayment in an amount not to exceed three-fourths of his or her periodical earnings or wages.

(g) Nothing in this chapter shall be construed to interfere with the right of an employee to join, become a member of, contribute to, donate to, or pay dues or fees to a union, labor organization, or club.

Note: WV Code updated with legislation passed through the 2020 Regular Session
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