Senate Bill No. 355
(By Senators Kessler (Mr. President) and M. Hall,
By Request of the Executive)
[Originating in the Committee on the Judiciary; reported April 1, 2013.]
A BILL to amend and reenact §21-5-4 of the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, relating to the time final wages are required to be paid to discharged employees; authorizing payment by mail if requested by the employee; providing that employers pay an employee all wages he or she earned at the time of quitting if the employee gives written notice of his or her intention to quit at least one pay period before quitting; defining “business day”; and making other technical changes.
Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:
That §21-5-4 of the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, be amended and reenacted to read as follows:
ARTICLE 5. WAGE PAYMENT AND COLLECTION.
§21-5-4. Cash orders; employees separated from payroll before paydays.
(a) In lieu of lawful money of the United States, any person, firm or corporation may compensate employees for services by cash order which may include checks or money orders on banks convenient to the place of employment where suitable arrangements have been made for the cashing of such the checks by employees for the full amount of wages.
(b) Whenever a person, firm or corporation discharges an employee, such the person, firm or corporation shall pay the employee's wages in full within seventy-two hours no later than the next regular payday or four business days, whichever comes first. Payment shall be made through the regular pay channels or, if requested by the employee, by mail. For purposes of this section, “business day” means a day on which state offices are open for regular business.
(c) Whenever an employee quits or resigns, the person, firm or corporation shall pay the employee's wages in full no later than the next regular payday. either Payment shall be made through the regular pay channels or, by mail if requested by the employee, except that by mail. However, if the employee gives at least one pay period's written notice of intention to quit, the person, firm or corporation shall pay all wages earned by the employee at the time of quitting.
(d) When work of any employee is suspended as a result of a labor dispute, or when an employee for any reason whatsoever is laid off, the person, firm or corporation shall pay in full to such the employee not later than the next regular payday, either through the regular pay channels or by mail if requested by the employee, wages earned at the time of suspension or layoff.
(e) If a person, firm or corporation fails to pay an employee wages as required under this section, such the person, firm or corporation, shall in addition to the amount which was unpaid when due, be is liable to the employee for three times that unpaid amount as liquidated damages. Every employee shall have such a lien and all other rights and remedies for the protection and enforcement of such his or her salary or wages, as he or she would have been entitled to had he or she rendered service therefor in the manner as last employed; except that, for the purpose of such liquidated damages, such the failure shall not be deemed to continue after the date of the filing of a petition in bankruptcy with respect to the employer if he or she is adjudicated bankrupt upon such the petition.
(NOTE: Strike-throughs indicate language that would be stricken from the present law, and underscoring indicates new language that would be added.)