By in Business

I Can't Believe It's Not Required!

I always figured that pay stub requirements were pretty standard, and that most employers followed the same procedures when doing payroll. This summer I've discovered that some of the information that I've always taken for granted, is actually not required to be on a pay stub in some jurisdictions.

For a worker who is paid by the hour, most pay statements will include:

  • Date the pay is issued

  • Number of hours worked

  • Hourly wage

  • Gross pay (calculated by multiplying the hours worked by the wage)

  • Payroll deductions for tax, union dues, pension plans, insurance, etc.

  • Net pay (gross minus all deductions)

And of course if there are amounts for pay in lieu of vacation, overtime worked, statutory holidays, etc., these will also be recorded as well.

But I had always believed the dates for the beginning and end of the pay period were required to be on the pay stub as well. And it turns out that in British Columbia at least, this is not mandatory .

Really! And apparently in Manitoba there is similarly no requirement for the pay period to be defined. Many other jurisdictions do specify that the pay period must be on a pay statement, but it seems unreal that it would ever not be there.

What information must be on a pay stub where you live or work?

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AngelSharum wrote on August 1, 2014, 6:27 PM

Roy has all of that on his, even the beginning and ending period.

Scorpie wrote on August 1, 2014, 6:32 PM

In the USA this varies by state law. Some states do not even require pay stubs at each pay period.

melody23 wrote on August 1, 2014, 6:36 PM

I actually don't know what the law is here in the UK but my last job just showed the gross pay, the amount of tax, the amount of national insurance and the take home pay, plus any holiday or sick pay or whatever. I now work for the NHS and my pay slips have every detail you can imagine on them! how many regular pay hours I worked, how many extra hours I get for doing a Saturday and a sunday, any extra for nightshift etc. It also shows the tax and national insurance, super annuation deductions and student loan deductions. It then tells me the total amount I have earned since the start of the financial year, what my salary should be if I work the 'standard' amount of hours, what my pay grade is, my payroll number and probably what I had for dinner as well!

Ruby3881 wrote on August 1, 2014, 7:00 PM

Some jurisdictions require the pay period. Some Canadian provinces do - I think Ontario, Quebec and Alberta are among them. But apparently not all do.

Ruby3881 wrote on August 1, 2014, 7:04 PM

Really? Wow, you'd think the pay slip would be a fairly universal requirement. I know sometimes a printed statement isn't required, for example if the information is delivered electronically. And in BC if all the information is the same every pay, the employer isn't obliged to issue more than a single stub for the first pay unless something changes.

Ruby3881 wrote on August 1, 2014, 7:08 PM

I used to work for Canada's Department of Veteran Affairs, so I can identify! We didn't get as much detail about the type of hours we were working, but then our collective agreement required an extra cheque to cover overtime, premiums for working nights, etc. All of that went on the "overtime cheque."

Ellis wrote on August 1, 2014, 7:08 PM

I live off the money I have in the bank so I no longer get paid a wage...

paigea wrote on August 2, 2014, 2:21 AM

I guess I never thought about it. Teachers get paid monthly and get a salary. So it's always the same no matter how many hours worked. I noticed the information on the pay stub but really never thought any of it was required.

AliCanary wrote on August 2, 2014, 12:58 PM

Everything you listed is normally there, but I just live in the US, nowhere exotic like Manitoba (Canada is so exotic)

Jobeli wrote on August 2, 2014, 1:43 PM

Your article is very informative especially to me who dreams of moving to Canada some day

Ruby3881 wrote on August 2, 2014, 5:41 PM

Some of that information is probably required by your state labour laws, and some by your union contract.

Ruby3881 wrote on August 2, 2014, 5:44 PM

Anywhere I've looked into that requires a pay stub, does require that tax and other deductions be itemized and that both net and gross pay be shown clearly. But it seems there are certain small differences from one jurisdiction to another regarding things like pay period, whether or not the year to date (YTD) amount must be shown, whether the employee's SSN (or SIN in Canada) or employee number must be on the stub, etc.

I was really surprised by how many subtle differences there are!

Ruby3881 wrote on August 2, 2014, 5:45 PM

You're in the UK aren't you, John? When you were working, what sorts of data were on your pay slip?

Ruby3881 wrote on August 2, 2014, 5:47 PM

LOL Ali! We Canadians often lack an awareness of how special our country is, so it's nice to be reminded of that - even when the remark is tongue-in-cheek :)

Ellis wrote on August 2, 2014, 5:54 PM

As far as I can remember the same as melody23 which was gross pay, the amount of tax, the amount of national insurance and the pittance I was allowed to take

Ruby3881 wrote on August 2, 2014, 5:54 PM

It's not often we hear about people dreaming about coming to Canada (usually it's America.) Thanks for sharing that! Do you have any specific region of Canada in mind? Most places have access to some sort of settlement program for newcomers, which helps you learn about our society, where to find things, how to get health care or apply for a job, how to read a pay stub, etc.

It all sounds pretty simplistic, but even moving from one province to another can mean a shift in how really basic things (like buying milk) are done. I remember when my girlfriend was talking about having to teach her son how to buy milk in a bag, as opposed to a jug. In certain parts of the country this is the way 4L of milk are sold, and there's sort of a trick to setting up the bags and opening them so the milk doesn't spill over when you pour it :)

k_mccormick2 wrote on August 2, 2014, 7:42 PM

It confuses me that they are not adding the cut off date to the paystubs. Talk about embarrassing to have to explain to the boss that it was your mistake and that every thing is all good.

Ruby3881 wrote on August 3, 2014, 11:01 AM

I still don't think you made a mistake, but the pay period was listed in this case. It's just that it's other than what it was supposed to be.

momathome wrote on August 8, 2014, 12:50 PM

I actually earn almost every dime I make exclusively online so I don't receive any paystubs but in the past every one I did receive always had the pay period shown on them.

Ruby3881 wrote on August 9, 2014, 3:08 AM

Yes, it is very different when you earn online! Thanks for stopping by to comment :)