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Can your employer change your timecard to reduce your pay?

Your timecard is your record of how long you have worked. The entries you make on it indicate when you start and end your shifts. Your employer will then have to pay you according to how long you worked during each pay period.

Sometimes, what a worker enters on their timecard doesn’t reflect the payment that they receive come payday. Some workers will find that their employers may have made changes to their timecard records. Is that behavior legal?

Sometimes, employers can make timecard changes

Under federal law, companies have an obligation to compensate their hourly employees for all of the time that they work. Your timecard is your personal record of what compensation you should receive, and you shouldn’t have to worry about anyone else making changes to it.

Your employer can only make changes to your timecard that are necessary and accurately reflect your work history. For example, if they realize that you put the wrong time down because you actually came in early one day, they could make a correction. However, they cannot fraudulently alter the records to reduce how much time you worked and therefore how much they pay you.

What if there isn’t a physical timecard?

Regardless of what kind of system your employer uses to track when you clock in and clock out, they should not make changes to those records to avoid paying you the wages you have earned. The use of digital time clock systems has made it easier than ever before for employers to alter someone’s timecard records without that worker realizing it.

Knowing about your wage rights can help you demand the pay that you deserve.