Wage Payment Rules for Separating Employees

Effective January 1, 2001, the State of California passed a new law regarding the timing of the payment of wages upon an employee’s separation from the university. This will require an immediate change in the processing of employment separations. The new rules that must be put in place immediately are:

  1. If an employee is discharged, the wages earned and unpaid at the time of discharge are due and payable immediately at the place of discharge.
  2. If an employee who does not have a written contract for a definite period quits, his or her employment, wages shall become due and payable not later than 72 hours thereafter, unless the employee gave 72 hours previous notice of the intention to quit. In that case, the employee is entitled to wages on the date of their separation. An employee who quits without providing a 72 hour notice is entitled to receive payment by mail if s/he requests and designates a mailing address. In this case, the date of mailing will constitute the date of payment.
  3. A notice specifying the regular paydays and the time and place of payment must be posted conspicuously at the worksite.

If the university fails to comply with these rules, the employee will continue to receive wages from the due date until paid or until an action is filed, for up to 30 days. In addition, any person, or the agent, manager, superintendent or officer who fails to post a notice regarding time and place of payment of wages, or who fails to pay a discharged employee as specified above, is guilty of a misdemeanor.

To comply with these new rules, it will now be necessary for you to submit separation forms and final time cards at least 72 hours in advance of the separation date when notice is given. When no notice is given, the forms must be submitted on the separation date. Separation forms can be faxed directly to the Human Resrources Records unit at 734-1754.

For employees working in Sacramento County, final wages will be available for pick up at the Payroll Office in the Broadway Building. For those working outside Sacramento County, departments will need to make arrangements for pick up with the Payroll Office when the final timecard is submitted. Checks must be distributed to the employee in the county in which the employee works.

In the case of a discharge, your Labor Relations consultant will provide direction.