Wage Reduction: What You Need to Know

published Jun 11, 2019
1 min read

Wage Reduction

When you have a contract with your employer, you expect to be paid the same amount each month, provided you meet the terms of the contract in the number of hours that you work. Of course, sometimes employers take things into their own hands and make reductions for one reason or another. This is not always legal, and it can be a serious problem.

In this article, we are going to tell you a bit more about wage reduction and what you need to know about it. Keep reading to find out more about this.

What Is Wage Reduction?

Wage reductions are illegal under the Employment Rights Act 1996 (ERA). Wage reduction involves situations when the worker is paid less than they were owed according to their contract and typical wages for hours that have been worked. The deficit amount of the amount paid counts as the deduction in this case.

Who Is Protected?

Under the law, any employees, part time workers, casual staff, workers that has had a deduction made illegally can be protected. Self-employed contractors may also be protected under this act (please speak to a member of our team if you wish to find out more).

An unlawful deduction of wages is something which can be resolved with the help of professionals who are experienced in employment law.

There are some exceptions to this law, and it is important that you understand these before trying to claim that you have been paid less than you deserve. If your contract authorises this type of deduction, then you will be exempt. Other exemptions include when you have given prior consent to the deduction or when the deduction is required by statute. Make sure to consider these terms carefully.

What to Do

If you believe that you have had deductions made from your wages unlawfully then you might want to get in touch with someone who can help you with this. There are many law firms who specialise in employment law and they can help you to get the money that you deserve.

When you do contact professionals to help with this, they might ask to see some evidence of the deductions. For this reason, you should collect some of this evidence and have it ready to present. This could be a copy of your contract and perhaps a copy of your payslip with the deductions noted. If you can provide this evidence, then it will help to make the process a lot easier.


Unlawful deduction of wages is a very serious problem and if this is something which you are having to deal with then you should make sure to get in touch with someone who can help. It is important that you know about the conditions of the Employment Rights Act 1996 and that you understand whether you are rightfully owed this money.

You also only have a strict time frame of three months less one day to bring a claim to an Employment Tribunal from the last deduction that was made.

Now that you know everything you need to know about wage reduction, you can take the next step and ensure that you get everything that you owe. Your employer has certain obligations and must follow employment law so don’t be afraid to speak out.

Please note the above is general advice only.