Payment of Wages: West Virginia
Federal law and guidance on this subject should be reviewed together with this section.
Author: Eric E. Kinder, Spilman Thomas & Battle, PLLC
- The term wages is broadly defined in the West Virginia wage payment law. See Definition of Wages.
- West Virginia law allows payment of wages by cash, check or money order. Direct deposit and electronic payroll cards are also permitted with certain restrictions. See Wage Payment Methods.
- Employers in West Virginia must pay employees at least two times per month, and no more than 19 days apart. Special rules apply to railroad employers. Penalties are imposed for employer violations. See Pay Frequency.
- The law permits employers to make certain types of deductions from employees' wages. Other deductions may be made if agreed to by the employer and employee. See Permitted and Prohibited Wage Deductions.
- Employers must give each employee a written, itemized statement of earnings and pay deductions on each payday. Electronic pay statements are permitted under certain circumstances. See Pay Statement Requirements.
- New employees must be provided with written notice of certain pay information in writing, either directly or via a general posting in the workplace. Existing employees must be notified, in writing or by a poster, before the effective date of any changes in required information pay information. See Employee Notification Requirements.
- Terminated employees must generally be paid their final pay by the next regular payday. Unused but accrued fringe benefits are payable according to employer-employee agreement. If an employee does not return employer-provided property when employment ends, the employer may withhold, deduct or divert a portion of the employee's final wages to cover the replacement cost of the property that is not returned. Penalties are imposed for employer violations of the termination pay laws. See Final Pay.
- If an employee dies and unpaid wages are owed, the employer can pay a limited amount of the unpaid wages to certain family members without notice of actual notice of probate proceedings. See Deceased Employee Wages.
- Employers holding a certain amount of unclaimed wages must file a report and remit the wages to the state Unclaimed Property Division by a certain date. Employers are also required to notify the affected employee within a certain time period that he or she has unclaimed wages that will be remitted to the state. See Unclaimed Wages.