Follow
Share

According to my 82 year old patient’s spouse (who is 61 years old and healthy), I was expected to pay for rent and for food. I was also in a difficult situation at the time and waiting for my direct deposit card to come in the mail. In order to cash my checks, (also being unable to leave the house with her husband unattended), she would deposit my paycheck into her bank account and deduct the money I “owed them” and give me the cash. This went on for about a month. I received my last check, signed it, and put it away in a safe place to cash myself later that day. I didn’t want her depositing anymore of my paychecks and deducting money that I felt unsure of “owing her”. I looked into this and I was informed by a reliable source that these expenses were not supposed to be deducted from my pay. I was working around the clock, seven days a week and felt like I deserved the full paycheck. When I confronted her about this issue, the argument escalated to the point of her acting irrational. I cautiously left the house and came back to find my belongings thrown out on the front lawn in garbage bags. When I did not find my paycheck, I asked her about it and she denied having it. I contacted the agency about this and they told me that there is nothing they can do about issuing me a new one if she already deposited it. I went to the police department and they told me if the check was signed they could not do anything about it. I feel like there is something very wrong with this scenario... What do I do?

Joann, the problem is the agency because they are the employer and act as the intermediary between the employee and client.

Also, the bank is not going to turn over deposit information to someone not on the account. In fraud examination, the routing number and account number is on the back of cleared check which the agency would have access to electronically. The only problem is I, personally would never allow a payroll clerk access to the bank accounts in that respect so the request would have to be in writing and a policy would be in place stating a 48 hour processing time. If I am the agency, I am also smart enough to run this by my insurance policy and company attorney. Also, the woman should have also had to endorse the check.

In the case of fraud or theft, you never charge a stop payment on the check to the employee. The agency would have marked up her wage 50% and it would be a bank fee expense.

The labor board does not act on petty complaints. They do take wage violations and ERISA complaints seriously. This is federal noncompliance and no company wants to open that can of worms when they call.
Helpful Answer (1)
Reply to tacy022
Report

Delilah, you say you were going to loose your medicaid program because it showed you were earning double what you were. That's not true, your paycheck that you signed over to be cashed for you is what you earned. That your employer was taking 1/2 for your rent and food doesn't mean you didn't earn it.

By willingly signing over your 1st 4 checks to this person you created a hard situation for yourself. You may be out of luck with this one if you have no proof that you were not receiving your entire paycheck as cash from your employer's wife.

If you get nothing else out of this, get the lesson that you need to have a checking account or valid ID to be able to cash or deposit your payroll.

Just curious, if you could never leave in the 5 weeks you worked there, why would you need to cash your checks every week? You say you were waiting for a debit card but you don't need that to make a deposit in to your account. I am guessing you are not an American citizen and you are getting really bad advice. I believe that you can receive financial counseling through the programs offered. You should require the agency you worked for to provide the cancelled check, I would imagine that she destroyed the check and didn't deposit it. You have the right to report it stolen to the agency and request a copy of the cancelled check to give to the police, labor board and whomever can help you.
Helpful Answer (1)
Reply to Isthisrealyreal
Report

If the agency sent that check, they can put a stop payment on it. The bank will reverse it out of the woman's account. Tell the agency you are willing to pay the cost of the stop payment.

A little confused, did you sign ur check before depositing. As said, this u never do till u get to the bank. If you didn't sign the check, then the woman had to forge it. Bank would then be responsible because they are suppose to ask for ID if they don't know the person.

The agency should be able to tell you if the check was cashed. If so, take the info to the bank and ask for a copy of the front and back. (The agency may have to do this but I would rather do it myself) The bank should be able to tell u what account it was deposited to. Then you take that copy and info to the Police telling them the check was not cashed by you. Not sure how u will get the rest back since she probably gave you cash. Her word against hers. Unless she gave you a check. Then u have agency request copies of those checks, info showing they were deposited. Then you have, lets say, a $500 check going in her account and a $300 check from her in hand with you as "pay to the order of".

I would have thought the agency would have had a contract in place explaining what your duties and expenses were. Like that you worked ____ hrs a week @ _____ an hr. not to go over 40. That u have 2 days a week off. That on those 2 days, a second caregiver is needed. Anything over 40hrs is time and a half. That the hourly rate is adjusted accordingly because the client will be providing room and board.

In my area, its against the law to work an RN or LPN for more than 16 hrs a day and I think there is a stipulation on how many 16 hr days they are allowed in concession. I would think this goes for CNAs or any caregiver. My daughter has worked 2 days in a row at 16 hrs a day.

Now the labor board. Not saying you shouldn't go but again its your word against hers. Have your Ducks in a row. I really think the agency is at fault here for not making things plain to the client.

I think you've learned a lesson here. It can go both ways, hired Caregivers stealing from a client and live in Caregivers being stolen from. Me personally would not feel comfortable living in a strangers home. This also sets you up for being taken advantage of because you are there all the time.
Helpful Answer (1)
Reply to JoAnn29
Report
Isthisrealyreal Apr 28, 2019
JoAnn, she signed 4 checks over before the last one, which she signed and then put away to cash later in the day. The bank wouldn't question a check that has been signed over for deposit in a personal account.
(0)
Report
The first thing you need to do is contact your agency and get a copy of your employment contract and handbook. Also, ask for copies of cancelled checks.

So in respect to payroll deductions, you need to sign a payroll authorization form. For example, uniforms are a normal possible deduction. In order for a company to deduct the money, a signed payroll authorization deduction form which needs to have an amount and description of the misc. deduction.

Your problem is not governed by the police unless you say the last check was stolen. You need to contact the Federal Department of Labor for employment and pay violations.
Helpful Answer (3)
Reply to tacy022
Report
Delilah1127 Apr 28, 2019
Thank you for your response. I no longer work there, however I will be reporting the last check stolen and contacting department of labor.
(2)
Report
See 1 more reply
If you were required to leave with your belongings in a garbage bag, that also constitutes an illegal eviction, imo.



There are "free" attorneys to help you.
Helpful Answer (4)
Reply to Sendhelp
Report

Oh wow.. wish I could offer something helpful but the live-in caregivers in my area pay for their own expenses like food but never rent. They’re paid minimal wages hourly but don’t have any room & board type expenses
Helpful Answer (2)
Reply to star97
Report

When cashing or depositing any check, sign it only in the presence of the cashier at your bank.

You work through an agency?
Doesn't the agency receive the payment from the client, then pay you?
What kind of agency is this, did you have an agreement/contract with the agency?
Will the agency place you in a better job?

Are you being paid "under the table" (cash, taxes and SS not deducted?)
And because of this illegal arrangement the client can get away with exploiting you?

Yes, there are many things wrong with your circumstances, the least of which is the possibility of slave labor, theft, non-payment of wages due.

So, (not making assumptions), you are fired? Where will you live?
Are you still living there? Are you okay?

The nice people of the United States of America frown on this kind of treatment to ANY employee, no matter what the employee was persuaded to agree upon, especially if under pressure. There are laws to protect you.

And there are labor laws that require that you have time-off, and the ability to leave for time-off.

How are you?
Helpful Answer (3)
Reply to Sendhelp
Report
Delilah1127 Apr 27, 2019
Hi, I was hired by the agency and the client was a “friend” of a friend. The paycheck was mailed from the agency from the clients Medicare. I was recently advised that full time live in health aids are supposed to live for free and eat for free in CT. I was afraid to speak up about this because I had no where else to go and I knew she would kick me out once she wasn’t getting half my paycheck every week. But my state health insurance was going to kick me off since my income revealed double of what I was actually making.. I knew I wasn’t going to be able to afford my medications anymore but I didn’t want to be homeless at the same time
(0)
Report
See 4 more replies
Delilah, since live-in caregiving is contract driven, it would be negotiable as to who will pay for what, the salary, days off, etc.

If you do run into a live-in situation where rent is required, make sure the family offers a high enough salary so you will have enough to pay for rent and enough left over for personal items, your car, and to put into savings.
Helpful Answer (5)
Reply to freqflyer
Report
freqflyer Apr 27, 2019
Delilah, thanks for adding more information to your post. When I had answered it, it was just the first sentence of the title showing.

Something doesn't sound right here. Maybe time to change Agencies. There are State Laws about how many hours a paid caregiver can work. You definitely are working more than the maximum.
(1)
Report

Ask a Question

Subscribe to
Our Newsletter