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The state of Florida is an “at will” state, meaning that employment can be terminated by your employer or by the employee at any given time with no reason or written notice. Upon being fired, a former employee looks to receive his final paycheck. Florida doesn't require an employer to provide wages owed to the employee on the day of termination.
Upon final separation, an employer prepares the final payment to the former employee on the next scheduled pay day. An employer can't hold an employee’s final paycheck as ransom in an attempt to coerce the employee into signing an employment release statement or other document.
If you request your final paycheck and it's not received within 30 days of termination, you can sue your former employer for collection, fees and costs associated with the attempt to collect unpaid wages. These fees include attorney fees and court costs. In the final paycheck, back wages, including minimal or hourly wage owed, and any overtime pay must be included.
There are no provisions in Florida's wage and labor laws requiring employers to pay a terminated employee accrued, but unused vacation and sick time. Doing so depends on the company’s bylaws or employee handbook.
Upon termination, an employer can recoup monies paid in advance to an employee. Advances in pay, early payout of vacation and sick time and reimbursement for damaged equipment can be recouped. In Florida, an employer can recoup money for uniforms and other company equipment only if the employee signed an agreement upon hire to reimburse the company for any company materials that aren't returned to the company upon separation.
If your final wages aren't received from your former employer, wages claims can be filed against the employer with the Florida Department of Labor. Also check with the U.S. Department of Labor, Wage, and Hour Division for any information on your unemployment rights regarding final wages.
JaKaye Jesse lives in sunny Florida where she has been a freelance writer since 2009. Jesse is currently writing for Demand Studios and has published several articles on eHow. She holds a master's degree in film from Miami International University, a bachelor’s degree in business administration, and a bachelor’s degree in film studies.