The Payment of Wages Act 1991 regulates how wages and salaries are paid and what deductions may be made from same. Under this Act, an employer is not permitted to make deductions from an employee's wages unless the deduction is authorised under the contract of employment, required by statute, or is made with the prior written consent of the employee.
Special restrictions are placed on employers in relation to deductions from wages that arise from any act or omission of the employee. For example such deductions, in addition to being authorised by a term in the employee's contract, must be fair and reasonable having regard to all the circumstances including the amount of the wages of the employee. Further, the employee must be given particulars in writing of the act or omission and the amount of the deduction at least one week before the deduction is made.
If an employee believes that his/her employer has made an unlawful deduction from his/her pay, then s(he) may refer a complaint to the Workplace Relations Commission, where the matter can be dealt with in the manner described above.