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March 19, 2010
How Voluntary Deductions Apply in Your Organization

In a BLR webinar entitled ‘Payroll: How to Legally Handle Tax Levies and Garnishments’, attorneys Clint Robison and Amy Jensen provide information regarding voluntary deductions from an employee’s paycheck. They explain that voluntary deductions can occur if an employee elects to participate in any of the following:

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  • a retirement plan such as 401K
  • a flexible spending plan
  • organizational purchases or a company order, which the company can enable you purchase with your approved paycheck deduction; for example, uniforms, special work shoes and branded clothing in restaurants and retail environments

However, the employee can also arrange with the Internal Revenue Service or other garnishment agency, to have a voluntary deduction in the form of additional money deducted from the employee’s paycheck than is required by law. This voluntary deduction will be used for the ordered garnishment. Therefore, the employer may decide to provide the garnishment agency with a check for the exact approved amount requested by the employee.

Clint Robison is a partner in the Los Angeles office of Hinshaw & Culbertson, one of the largest and oldest law firms in the country and can be reached at Amy Jensen is a senior employment attorney in the firm's Los Angeles office, who provides counseling and litigation services to a variety of companies. She can be reached at

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