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Involuntary and Voluntary Pay Deductions: North Carolina

Involuntary and Voluntary Pay Deductions requirements for other states

Federal law and guidance on this subject should be reviewed together with this section.

Author: Vicki M. Lambert, The Payroll Advisor


  • An employer that receives an income withholding order (IWO) for child support against an employee's wages must begin withholding from the first payment due the employee in the first pay period that occurs 14 days following the date the notice was served on the employer. The employer must remit the amounts withheld within seven days from the date the employee is paid. Employers also must comply with various notification requirements and withholding limits. See Child support Withholding.
  • Although North Carolina courts are not permitted to order an employer to withhold wages for an employee's personal debt, creditors in other states may be able to get an order of garnishment under their own states' laws requiring a North Carolina employer to withhold from an employee's wages. See Creditor Garnishment Withholding.
  • An employer may be served with a notice of garnishment by the state Department of Revenue (DOR) requiring it to withhold specified amounts from the wages of an employee who owes past-due taxes. The employer must comply with the notice or file a written response to the notice within 30 days after receiving it. The employer must continue to withhold until the DOR sends it a notice of release. See Tax Levies.
  • An employer is not required to honor an employee's voluntary wage assignment unless the employer agrees to honor it. See Voluntary Wage Assignments.