Delivery of Wages to Deceased Employees
Here are the essentials for the issue regarding payments of wages and bonuses to a deceased employee. There are two possible situations that may impact the procedure for the delivery of wages to a deceased employee:
- 1. If there are known beneficiaries/representatives who come forward to request the delivery of the wages, then the situation is governed by 20 Pa. C.S. § 3101. The procedure under this statute is fairly simple. If the wages to be paid out are less than $5,000 the employer can payout the amount due to the (1) spouse, (2) any child, (3) father or mother, or (4) sister or brother of the deceased employee (preference should be given in the order named). The employer who makes such payments will be released from liability and treated as if they had made payment to a duly appointed personal representative of the deceased employee. The person who receives the payment will be held responsible for any prejudice caused to another as a result of receiving such payment.
- 2. If there are no known beneficiaries/representatives who come forward to collect the wages then eventually the wages will be treated as unclaimed property which is governed by 72 P.S. § 1301.10. In this situation the wages that remain unclaimed for two years from the date that they were payable, are presumed to be abandoned and unclaimed. When the wages become unclaimed it becomes the responsibility of the employer to report such wages to the State Treasurer by filing a report that adheres to the requirements found in 72 P.S. §1301.11(a)-(k).
Given these procedures above, holding the wages and bonuses until a beneficiary or representative comes forward to claim them is ideal. If after two years no person comes forward to claim the wages, then the wages should be reported to the State Treasurer by the prescribed method.
These guides provide general information only and are not intended as legal advice, nor do they create an attorney-client relationship. The facts in your particular situation may render a different result. Therefore, for more information on this general topic, please contact the us via the navigation menu at the top.
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These guides provide general information only and are not intended as legal advice, nor do they create an attorney-client relationship. The facts in your particular situation may render a different result. Therefore, for more information on this general topic, please contact the Artell Law Group via the navigation menu to the left.