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South Carolina Employment Law Questions & Answers
1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law for South Carolina on
Q: South Carolina employer automatically deducts 30 minutes of pay after 6 hours of work whether I take it or not. Legal?
Jeremy R. Summerlin
Jeremy R. Summerlin answered on Aug 28, 2018

No, if you are working during those "break times," then you should be paid for those hours worked. That type of deduction, if you're still working, is wage theft and illegal in SC.

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Discrimination and Employment Law for South Carolina on
Q: If a employee separates hisself from his employer . An they don’t want to give him his last paycheck what can happen ?

Can he sue the employer ?

Jeremy R. Summerlin
Jeremy R. Summerlin answered on Aug 28, 2018

Yes, if an employer fails to pay the employee, then the employee can bring a lawsuit under the SC Wage Payment Act. If the amount owed is less than $7500, then you can bring a lawsuit in small claims court/magistrate's court yourself. You can also contact the SC LLR to file a complaint,... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law for South Carolina on
Q: Can I get unemployment if I get fire or laid off within 90 days of hire or employment. ?
Jeremy R. Summerlin
Jeremy R. Summerlin answered on Jun 4, 2018

You can apply for unemployment benefits, but the amount you might receive is based on your income in the months leading to your termination. Also, if you were fired for cause, then you won't receive any benefits.

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law for South Carolina on
Q: AFTER BEING ON FMLA I RETURNED TO WORK TO MY SAME JOB BUT WAS ONLY GIVEN 3 DAYS TO WORK INSTEAD OF 5. CAN THEY DO THIS.

I HAVE BEEN WITH THIS COMPANY FOR 18 YEARS AND HAVE ALWAYS WORKED 5 DAYS A WEEK. FMLA SAYS THAT I SHOULD HAVE MY SAME JOB AND WORK SCHEDULE AND PAY.

Jeremy R. Summerlin
Jeremy R. Summerlin answered on May 8, 2018

You may have a claim for FMLA retaliation. You should speak with an employment attorney in more detail to determine your legal options.

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law for South Carolina on
Q: Incorrect job classification results in unfair pay. Can I sue?

Employer informed job classification is lower than what is appropriate for the type of work I do. As a result, I’m being paid less than I should be. As job duties continue to increase, my salary has not been corrected. What can I do to receive fair compensation?

Jeremy R. Summerlin
Jeremy R. Summerlin answered on May 3, 2018

Unfair pay can be negotiated to a more fair salary amount, but there's no legal claim for it. The only exception is for cases where you have been misclassified as exempt from overtime pay but you are, in fact, working overtime hours without getting paid overtime (in other words, you might be... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law, Personal Injury and Workers' Compensation for South Carolina on
Q: I went to the er for a scratched cornea and before I left work me and my boss called to report my injury and I filled

An incident report but I wasn’t told to go to a specific emergency room and I also talked to my boss upon entering the er and afterwards I was out of work for about a week but upon returning I found out the er I went to wasn’t part of their workers comp and they used my accumulated sick time to... Read more »

Carole Jean Hayes
Carole Jean Hayes answered on Apr 27, 2018

Generally, when you injure yourself while working, you are entitled to 66% of your average weekly wages if you miss more than 7 days. The insurance company is also responsible for directing and payment of your causally-related medical treatment. If you had to go to the ER immediately after given... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law and Family Law for South Carolina on
Q: Am I entitled to have 3 days off for my aunt passing away?
Jeremy R. Summerlin
Jeremy R. Summerlin answered on Apr 12, 2018

South Carolina law does not require an employer to offer funeral leave; however some employers do offer it as a benefit. Check your employee handbook. Otherwise, you'll just have to request it off and see what the employer does.

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law for South Carolina on
Q: What do I do when I work at a store that has highly unethical and borderline illegal practices

I work for an adult novelty store and recently learned of a large number of highly unethical and borderline illegal practices by both the owner and several employees. I've learned from both current and past employees that I'm being strong armed into quitting because these... Read more »

Jeremy R. Summerlin
Jeremy R. Summerlin answered on Apr 9, 2018

If the unethical conduct violates the law, then you can report such conduct to the appropriate authorities. It depends greatly on the exact facts of your case as to whether you would be protected from retaliation if you report the misconduct. You should seek counsel with an experienced employment... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law for South Carolina on
Q: job wants signature to addedum in handbook to withhold earned vacation time if terminated.

Time accrued occurred prior to the singing of this handbook update. I can see vacation time earned after this new rule being withheld , but the vacation time prior was when this was not the policy and they are going back and retroactively including that time as well, and also under the previous... Read more »

Jeremy R. Summerlin
Jeremy R. Summerlin answered on Apr 2, 2018

The answer would depend on the specific language of the addendum and policy. You should take both to an employment attorney for a consult.

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law for South Carolina on
Q: As a Supervisor, Is it retaliation if I’m terminated due to employee accusations against me of retaliation?
Jeremy R. Summerlin
Jeremy R. Summerlin answered on Apr 2, 2018

No, retaliation is only when YOU make a legally protected complaint (of discrimination, for example) and then the employer fires you or takes other adverse employment action against you.

1 Answer | Asked in Contracts and Employment Law for South Carolina on
Q: I recently left a company with a non-compete that specifies a territory "within the United States". Is this enforceable?

The company I left does a small percentage (less than 1%) of work that I would potentially be competing with so it would not affect their core business. Also, I would be providing only some overlapping services, and not all that I was producing at the previous company. Do I need to worry about an... Read more »

Jeremy R. Summerlin
Jeremy R. Summerlin answered on Apr 2, 2018

The answer depends very much on the exact language of the non-compete. SC law requires that a non-compete be limited reasonably in time (three years or less, generally) and reasonably in geographic scope, among other requirements. If you serviced customers all over the US, then the agreement MAY... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law for South Carolina on
Q: Is an employer allowed to take an employees tips?

We put all of the tips together and divide them amongst the employees based on hours worked at the end of the month. Can an employer take those tips away? They say they’re a privilege to get, not a right, and they can take them away at any given time.

Jeremy R. Summerlin
Jeremy R. Summerlin answered on Apr 2, 2018

If you are getting paid $2.13 an hour plus tips, then you are entitled to your tips, unless some of those tips are subject to a valid tip pool arrangement. If you are paid at at least $7.25 an hour, then the law is a little unclear on whether or not you are entitled to keep those tips. Speak with a... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law and Employment Discrimination for South Carolina on
Q: Terminated after being charged at. Was charged with Assault and battery 3rd degree. Case dismissed. Can I sue employer?

Was denied unemployment benefits and pending chargers were placed on background. I have no source of income. The chargers and termination were reason for no employment after companies checked background.

Jeremy R. Summerlin
Jeremy R. Summerlin answered on Apr 2, 2018

If the police charged you with a crime, the employer is legally allowed to fire you. SC is an at-will employment state, and unless the termination is based on discrimination on the basis of age, race, disability, sex, religion, or national origin, then you don't have a basis to sue your employer.

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Discrimination and Employment Law for South Carolina on
Q: Can you sue a former employer for being a bully? Threatening you by intimidation to the point of being fearful of job
Jeremy R. Summerlin
Jeremy R. Summerlin answered on Apr 2, 2018

Not unless the bullying was based on your age, race, sex, disability, national origin, or religion. Regular bullying is not necessarily against the law.

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Discrimination, Employment Law and Legal Malpractice for South Carolina on
Q: At work of they ask you to leave early due to labor can you legally say no in leaving.
Jeremy R. Summerlin
Jeremy R. Summerlin answered on Apr 2, 2018

You can say no, but your employer would have every right to fire you for insubordination. SC is an at-will employment state, so unless the decision to send employees home is motivated by race, age, disability, sex, or other protected reason, the employer can send people home early.

1 Answer | Asked in Car Accidents and Employment Law for South Carolina on
Q: I drive a company truck. Am I responsible to pay for any accidental damage done to the truck while on job?

I work for a pest control company. My boss gives me a work truck to drive to my jobs. I accidentally backed my work truck into a small tree I didn’t see while leaving a customers house, 2 years ago. It damaged the bumper. I put in my 2 weeks and today, the day before I’m supposed to leave my... Read more »

Peter N. Munsing
Peter N. Munsing answered on Mar 28, 2018

Not necessarily. If you are leaving, leave. He can try suing you but you were doing his business. Ask to see the estimates first--make copies. If he tries to sue you you have a defense. Was the bumper deformed?

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law for South Carolina on
Q: I only got one week of pay when I should have gotten two weeks of pay from my past company. Do i have any recourse here?

I was paid bi-weekly. I was let go at the end of a pay period in which I worked both weeks of that pay period. When I got my last check from the company, it was only for one week. I called and talk to HR and they told me that the dates that are printed on my pay stub are not correct. They said that... Read more »

Jeremy R. Summerlin
Jeremy R. Summerlin answered on Mar 2, 2018

If you have not been paid for all hours that you worked, then you can contact the SC Labor, Licensing and Regulation to file a complaint. You can also bring a lawsuit in small claims court (magistrate's court) for the unpaid wages.

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law and Employment Discrimination for South Carolina on
Q: Is level of education a protected category for discrimination?

I have a Master's degree, my company said they would pay for me to go back to get an MBA. Now, they changed their mind and said that they will not offer me tuition assistance for anything because I already have a graduate degree.

Jeremy R. Summerlin
Jeremy R. Summerlin answered on Mar 2, 2018

No, level of education is not a protected category. However, if the company promised to provide tuition assistance but then went back on its promise, then it may be a breach of contract claim that you have. Of course, details matter and a consult with an employment lawyer would be required.

2 Answers | Asked in Employment Law, Workers' Compensation and Business Law for South Carolina on
Q: I'm a subcontractor in S.C. If I hire me (1) helper and pay him a flat salary, do I have to carry worker's comp. on him?
Carole Jean Hayes
Carole Jean Hayes answered on Feb 14, 2018

If you only have one employee, in South Carolina you do not need to have workers' compensation insurance.

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1 Answer | Asked in Workers' Compensation and Employment Law for South Carolina on
Q: I slipped in the cooler at work and hurt my knee. I've been getting work comp amd they have payed for all my drs and my

Surgery. What i wont to know is can they let me go while im out of work? The injury happend in july and its November now

Ilene Stacey King
Ilene Stacey King answered on Nov 11, 2017

Unfortunately, yes, it is possible to be terminated while on workers' compensation in South Carolina. The work injury status does not protect your job. South Carolina is an employment at will state. Employees can be terminated for any reason - good or bad - or no reason, with a few... Read more »

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