submitted by The Employment Standards Branch
An employee must be paid for their work
An employee is usually paid either by salary or by hourly wage. An employee must be paid by either cash (with a receipt), a cheque, or by direct deposit into an account of the employee.
An employee must be paid on time
Employees can be paid once each week, once every two weeks or twice a month, as long as the time between pay days is no greater than 16 consecutive days. An employer can choose how frequently to pay an employee but once the choice is made will continue to pay the employee in the same way.
An employee’s pay day cannot be later than five days after the end of a pay period. The pay day must include all wages earned by the employee in the pay period. In the event of a termination, an employee must be paid no later than the last day of the next pay period after the one in which the employee was terminated.
In general, an employee should not be scheduled to work for less than three hours. An employer who requires an employee to leave their shift early must pay the employee for at least three hours at their regular pay.
The reporting pay provision applies also to mandatory staff meetings held by an employer outside of an employee’s regular hours of work. For instance, an employee who is required to attend a mandatory staff meeting while on their day off must receive at least three hours of pay for attending the meeting even if the meeting is less than three hours in length. Staff meetings that do not require mandatory attendance by employees do not have to be paid by the employer.
Wait time situations can arise when an employer asks or requires an employee to take an unpaid time-out at the beginning of a shift or during a shift because there is insufficient work to do. Wait time is to be paid by the employer.
Notice before reducing rate of wages
An employer must give at least one pay period notice to an employee before reducing the regular rate of wages of the employee.
This article provides only general information. Details of the Prince Edward Island Employment Standards Act and Regulations can be obtained by contacting the Employment Standards Branch at 902-368-5550 (toll free at 800-333-4362).
Visit www.peiemploymentstandards.com for more information.
The Branch is located in the Sherwood Business Centre, 2nd floor, 161 St. Peter’s Road, Charlottetown.