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Employment and Labor Laws

Georgia

Wage Payment


Frequency of Wage Payments

Georgia requires employers, except those in the farming, sawmill, and turpentine industries, to pay all employees all wages due on paydays selected by the employer, with paydays being divided between at least two (2) equal pay periods per month. This rule does not apply to company officials, superintendents, or other heads or subheads of departments who are paid a stipulated salary. They may be paid monthly or annually. GA Statute 34-7-2


Manner of Wage Payments

Georgia employers, except those in the farming, sawmill, and turpentine industries, may only pay employees, except company officials, superintendents, or other heads or subheads of departments who are paid a stipulated salary, by:

  • cash
  • check
  • payroll card account
  • direct deposit, with the employee’s consent

GA Statute 34-7-2


Direct Deposit

Georgia permits an employers to pay an employee by direct deposit, but only after receiving the consent of the employee. An Georgia employer may not require an employee to be paid by direct deposit. GA Statute 34-7-2

Payroll Card Account

Georgia permits employer to pay employees by payroll card account. To pay employees by payroll card account, employers must provide employees with a written explanation of any fees associated with the payroll card account. Employers must provide the written explanation at least 30 days prior to the date such payroll card account is to become available. For employees hired after employers decide to pay employees by payroll card account, the employers must provide the written explanation at the time the employers hire the employees.

Payroll card account means an account that is directly or indirectly established to which electronic fund transfers of wages or salaries are made on a recurring basis, whether the account is operated or managed by the employers or a third-party payroll processor, a depository institution, or any other person.

GA Statute 34-7-2


Payment upon Separation from Employment

Georgia does not have any laws dictating when an employer must pay wages to employees who:

  • have been fired or discharged;
  • voluntary quit or resign;
  • have left work due to a labor dispute or strike; or
  • are laid off

Wages in Dispute

Georgia does not have any laws requiring an employer to pay an employee wages conceded to be due when involved in a wage dispute with the employee.


Deductions from Wages

Georgia does not have any laws regarding what deductions may or may not be taken from an employee’s paycheck or whether an employee must provide written consent prior to any deduction. The lack of a law prohibiting deductions likely means an employer can withhold or deduct wages from an employee’s pay check for:

  • cash shortages
  • breakage, damage, or loss of the employer’s property
  • dishonored or returned checks
  • required uniforms
  • required tools
  • other items necessary for employment

In accordance with federal law, an employer may not make deductions for any of the above-listed items if it would cause the employee to earn less than federal minimum wage for the period in which the deduction was made. DOL Fact Sheet #16.


Uniforms, Tools, and Other Equipment Necessary for Employment

Georgia does not have any laws prohibiting an employer from requiring an employee to purchase a uniform, tools, or other items necessary for employment.


Pre-hire Medical, Physical, or Drug Tests

Georgia does not have any laws prohibiting an employer from requiring an applicant or employee to pay the cost of a medical examination or the cost of furnishing any records required by the employer as a condition of employment.


Notice of Wage Reduction

Georgia does not have any laws addressing when or how an employer may reduce an employee’s wages or whether an employer must provide employees notice prior to instituting a wage reduction. However, a wage reduction can only be applied to hours worked after the change and cannot be applied to hours already worked.


Statement of Wages (Pay Stub)

Georgia does not have any laws requiring employers to provide employees at the time of payment any notice of wages paid, wage rates, deductions, or other wage payment information.


Record Keeping Requirements

An employer must maintain records showing the hours worked by each employee and the wages paid to each employee. The law does not designate a minimum amount of time the information must be kept. GA Statute 34-4-5

Federal law requires every employer covered by the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) to keep certain records for each covered, nonexempt worker, for at least 3 years. For more information, visit FLSA.


Notice Requirements

When an employee is separated from employment, regardless of the reason, an employer is required to complete GA Dept. of Labor Form DOL-800 Form DOL-800, “Separation Notice.” In the case of mass layoffs or other mass separations, the employer must complete Form DOL-402 and Form DOL-402A. The employer must provide a completed Form DOL-800 to an employee on the last day the employee works. If the employee is not available on the last day of their employment, the employer must mail the employee a copy of Form DOL-800 within three (3) days of the last day of work. GA Statute 34-8-190


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