Can my employer deduct money from my wages?

An employer can only deduct money from an employee’s wage if:

  • the employee agrees in writing and it’s principally for their benefit
  • it’s allowed by a law, a court order, or by the Fair Work Commission
  • it’s allowed under a term of an employee’s award, or
  • it’s allowed under the employee’s registered agreement and the employee agrees to it.

For example, if you accidentally break something, your employer cannot deduct money from your wages. Further, an employer can’t force you to agree to a deduction.

Even if the deduction is authorised under a term in an award, registered agreement or contract of employment, the term has no effect if:

  • the deduction is directly, or indirectly, for the employer’s benefit, and is unreasonable, or
  • the employee is under the age of 18 and the employee’s parent or guardian has not authorised the deduction in writing.

If you are concerned about deductions from your wages, contact the Fair Work Infoline on 13 13 94.