A nurse recently took to TikTok for advice after she received notice that she owed $8,288 in overpaid wages.
The video comes from TikToker LexiLuther38 (@lexi.luthorr) and has been viewed over 913,000 times as of publication.
Lexi begans her story by explaining how a system-wide shutdown at her Emergency Room led to the medical records system and the time management system to turn off. Even though Lexi and her co-workers filled out their time sheets by hand, she said that the hospital “guesstimated” how much she was owed and sent out three to four months of paychecks.
“This was in October 2022,” Lexi noted, before adding that a year later, the hospital was demanding that she pay back funds that she had been “overpaid.”
“I don’t think I’ve ever had a paycheck that’s actually correct from this place,” a frustrated Lexi said before adding, “If I did my job the way they did I would have a trail of dead bodies behind me.”
“They’re saying that they want $8,288 back from me … I definitely don’t owe them that,” she continued tearfully. “They’re saying that they’re going to take it out of our paychecks, which means that basically I would work for free for like two months to two-and-a-half months to pay that back. And as a single mom with a mortgage who doesn’t get child support … I can’t live on that.”
Lexi also explained that her union had been unable to help and that while a class-action lawsuit might have yielded results, it would only do so years down the line. A lawyer also seemed like a risky proposition without the guarantee of a timely payout.
“I need to not lose my job from this paycheck … I need an accountant or a cease and desist letter … I need help like now. Anybody got any ideas?” she concluded.
@lexi.luthorr CHI overpayment #chioverpayment #wagetheft #epicshutdown #ernurse #nursecalled911fromemergencyroom #kelsayirby #chi #virginiamason #styikes ♬ original sound – LexiLuther38
Users flooded her comments with advice and support. Many users suggested ways to forestall any deductions from her paychecks.
“HR person here. Contact payroll 1st thing in the am. Ask them to explain the calculations. Send an email stating you do NOT consent to them deductions,” one advised.
“Payroll person here: make sure you ask for a backup of their calculations and do not consent to a deduction unless they can prove they’re overpaid you,” a second added.
“Go sit in payroll and make someone explain it to you. I’ve done this with sketchy jobs. Call Labor Board also,” a third suggested.
Others lamented the state of the US healthcare system.
“Omg. I’m so sorry. The healthcare industry is so broken and upper management is making huge salaries and we are drowning,” one user said.
“ER doc, iceland here. My anger towards your employer and the US “healthcare” is beyond mere words… I wish you well, and hope this reolves,” a second remarked.
Some nurses shared similar experiences in which their pay had been deducted after their employer claimed that they too had been overpaid.
“My hospital did that in December of 21. I had to pay back four thousand. But they took 25% of the paycheck out until it was paid,” one said.
“Our hospital did this and to 50% till it was paid it hurt but we were told they would take no matter what,” a second claimed.
“Happened to me. $4300. They took it out for quite a while! So sorry for you too,” a third added.
Unfortunately, while employees are protected by section 13 of the Employment Rights Act 1996 from any illegal wage deductions if their employer falsely claims they’ve been overpaid, a legal solution may be the only recourse.
The Daily Dot reached out to Lexi via TikTok comment for further information.