Is it legal to get paid for the previous two weeks all the time. For example for your paycheck for may 15 will be for April 15 thru the April 30?


In the United States it will depend on the specific labor laws of the state. However, we can look at California as an example because they're such a huge state and many other states take their cues from them.

According to California Department of Industrial Relations wages, with some exceptions, must be paid at least twice during each calendar month on the days designated in advance as regular paydays.

Wages earned between the 1st and 15th days, inclusive, of any calendar month must be paid no later than the 26th day of the month during which the labor was performed, and wages earned between the 16th and last day of the month must be paid by the 10th day of the following month.

Other payroll periods such as weekly, biweekly (every two weeks) or semimonthly (twice per month) when the earning period is something other than between the 1st and 15th, and 16th and last day of the month, must be paid within seven calendar days of the end of the payroll period within which the wages were earned.


  • Just to clarify: This will vary from state-to-state. For example, in Alaska (where I live), it is not only legal to get paid 2 weeks/15ish days after the end of a pay period, it is quite common, with 3 out of my last 4 jobs (including my current one) following this pattern. You should look up your state's Department of Labor (or equivalent) and find out what's true for your state. – Kromey May 2 '11 at 18:36
  • Note that there can be exceptions to these rules. For example, in NY, government employees are subject to a 3-week lag. – duffbeer703 May 2 '11 at 18:37

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