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    • 05 OCT 18
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    Know Your Rights: Salary Overpayments and Unilateral Pay Deductions

    Know Your Rights: Salary Overpayments and Unilateral Pay Deductions

    The FSA has noted a recent spike in instances of overpayment of our members. When this happens, the member has to repay BCIT. This may result in a rather disruptive monetary recovery process for you when it happens.

    How do these errors happen? Each department has significant autonomy as to how they manage themselves and administer the collective agreement. BCIT relies on each department maintaining these administrative systems and reporting accurately to HR and Finance. Departmental, HR, and Finance systems are particularly vulnerable during periods of high staff turnover.

    If an employee is paid wages to which they were not entitled, then those wages are an overpayment that must be returned to the employer. Similarly, we would insist that BCIT would be obligated to make up any short-falls to your earnings.

    The Employment Standards Act of BC is clear that an overpayment of wages cannot be deducted unilaterally from future wage payments without written consent of the employee affected. The employer has the right to recoup those wages in compliance with these guidelines and provisions available in the collective agreement. If a mutually agreeable resolution cannot be reached on a formula to pay back the overpayment, then BCIT has the right to file a grievance, see it through to arbitration and have an arbitrator decide how the employee has to reimburse the employer. It makes more sense for all involved to work together and find an agreeable re-payment plan.

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