Hawaii’s Payment of Wages law, HRS Chapter 388, does not address the minimum wage or circumstances under which overtime pay is earned. Rather, HRS Chapter 388 addresses how -- and how often -- employees should be paid.
Under the statute, every employer must pay all wages due to its employees at least twice during each calendar month. Pay days must be designated in advance by the employer and may not be more than seven days after each pay period ends.
Employers wishing to establish regular pay days less frequently than semimonthly (but at least once a month) must apply to the Hawaii Department of Labor and Industrial Relations (“DLIR”) for permission to do so. Employers who want to issue paychecks more than seven days (but within fifteen days) after the close of the payroll period must also receive permission from the DLIR.
Employees whose employment is terminated -- for any reason, with or without "cause" -- are entitled to receive payment for all wages earned up to the date of termination, at the time of termination. However, if the termination occurs at a time and under conditions that prevent the employer from making immediate payment, the payment is due the next working day after the termination.
Employees who resign must receive payment for all wages earned as of the date of resignation, no later than the next regular payday. Payment can be made through regular channels or by mail if the employee requests. If the employee gives at least one pay period's advance notice of resignation, the employer must pay all wages earned on the employee's last day of work.
If an employee is suspended as a result of a labor dispute (strike) or is laid off, the employer must pay all wages earned as of the date of the suspension or layoff no later than the next regular pay day. Payment can be made through regular channels or by mail if requested by the employee.
If there is a dispute between an employer and employee over the amount of wages due, the employer must pay, without condition and within the time limits set by law, all wages the employer believes are due. In other words, the employer must pay at least the undisputed amount. The employee is then entitled to take appropriate action for any balance he or she claims is still due.
An employer may not condition payment of any wages already earned and due on execution of a release by an employee. Furthermore, acceptance by an employee of any payment does not automatically constitute a release or accord and satisfaction of any dispute between the employer and employee over amounts due.
Employers may not deduct, retain, or otherwise require an employee to pay back any compensation earned by the employee except if it is required by federal or state law, ordered by a court, or authorized in writing by the employee.
The following may not be deducted from an employee's wages (regardless of whether it is authorized) or required to be borne by the employee: