What Deductions Must be Listed
Deductions required by law include:
- Income Tax;
- Canada Pension Plan (CPP); and
- Employment Insurance (EI).
Other allowable deductions include:
- employee contributions to pension plans or registered retirement savings plans;
- employee contributions to other benefit plans;
- charitable donations voluntarily made by the employee;
- voluntary contributions by the employee to savings plans or the purchase of bonds;
- initiation fees, dues, and assessments to a union that is the bargaining agent for the employee;
- court-ordered maintenance payments; and
- voluntary employee purchases from the employer for any goods, services or merchandise.
Unless the employer obtains a court judgment, an employer may not, directly or indirectly, withhold, deduct, or require payment of all or part of an employee's wages for any purpose. Examples that are not allowed include deductions for alleged:
- poor quality work;
- damage to employer's property including accidents involving employer vehicles or equipment; or
- failure to collect payment by a customer, including "dine-and-dashes" and shoplifting.
For example, an employee is working alone at night in a gas bar. A customer arrives, fills their tank with gasoline, and leaves without paying. The employer is not allowed to deduct the unpaid gasoline cost from the employee's wages.
In addition, employers cannot require employees to return wages.
Employers wishing to recover money from current or former employees should get legal advice.
Employers cannot require employees to purchase goods, merchandise or services from the employer as a condition of employment.
Uniforms and Special Clothing
An employer who requires an employee to wear uniforms or special clothing that identifies the employer's business must provide it at no cost to the employee. The employer cannot charge a deposit on uniforms.
If an employer requires staff members to wear certain clothing such as black pants or a skirt and a white shirt or blouse that can be worn off the job, this is not considered a uniform.
In addition, employers in restaurants, hotels, nursing homes, hospitals, or educational institutions who require their employees to wear a uniform must provide, launder and repair the uniform at no cost to the employee. Registered nurses are exempt from this provision.
Please contact the Occupational Health and Safety Division for information about payment for safety clothing, gear, and equipment.