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Are there laws regarding workplace collecting of money for events?

Discussion in 'Employment Contracts & Work Policies' started by ForamenMagnum, Nov 30, 2013.

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  1. ForamenMagnum

    ForamenMagnum Law Topic Starter New Member

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    Greetings everyone and happy holidays!

    Just as the title states, are there legal considerations when people in a workplace decide they want to pool resources to pay for a specific event, e.g. Christmas party, going away party, etc.?

    Is there a difference if this same group of employees "bank" the unused money and use it towards future events? Is this considered a booster club? Are there laws regarding this, specifically how the money is handled, who handles it, transparency, etc.?

    My wife informed me that a group of nurses at work have been taking donations at work to buy the doctors some Christmas gifts and decorations. One of the other nurses has emailed my wife indicating she needed pay up to reimburse her for her share since they have already purchased the items. I asked my wife what her share is. Should be an easy answer: "X" amount spent to purchase gifts and decorations divided by "Y" number of nurses = "Z" equal share, otherwise any one nurse could be contributing an unfairly large/small amount. She doesn't want to be branded the nurse who didn't fairly contribute, so she wants to give more than I feel is appropriate. She said that they use that money for other things, not just this one event so she doesn't really know what is appropriate to donate.

    That last statement is what concerned me. If they are using this collection of funds on current and future events, that indicates to me that there is the potential for mixing of personal funds with the collected/donated funds between events. Should there be a designated separation of those funds to encourage fiduciary responsibility and minimize the likelihood of someone stealing from others. Should the HR department already have policies in place regarding this or is it a subject that is handled at a higher level, e.g. state or federal?

    Your help and advise is appreciated. Once again, Happy Holidays to you and yours.

    - ForamenMagnum
     
  2. Betty3

    Betty3 Super Moderator

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    There is no state or federal law that I know of but the company could have its own policy. An employee, as far as I know, can't be forced to contribute.

    Hold & see if a HR person comes along - they possibly can tell you more.
     
  3. army judge

    army judge Super Moderator

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    There are no laws that govern what coworkers agree to do among themselves.

    That said, your wife is a woman, and she can decide what she wishes to contribute, $1,000, $100, $1.00, or NOTHNG.

    This isn't about any law.

    The law need not, nor does it control EVERY aspect of one's life!

    It's about common sense.

    I suggest you butt out, you've rendered your opinion, let your wife make her own decisions.

    Why?

    She's an adult, and I'm sure YOU make your decisions without consulting with her.

    That said, I never permitted my employees to solicit or collect money from each other.

    I also never allowed parties on my work premises.

    So, employees did these things off site.

    People are creative, and will find a way to do as they desire.
     
  4. cbg

    cbg Super Moderator

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    HR person here. No, there are no such laws.
     
  5. Betty3

    Betty3 Super Moderator

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    Where I worked we did more or less the things you mention your wife's workplace does. No one seemed to care much - dept. heads, HR........

    No one had to contribute/participate.
     
  6. cbg

    cbg Super Moderator

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    We send a card and an envelope around with a department list attached. You put your contribution in, or not, sign the card, cross your name off the list and give the whole shebang to someone whose name is still uncrossed. No one knows who contributed what, except, possibly, the second person to sign who can see what was contributed by the first person. We don't buy the gift until we see how much is collected. It works for us.
     
  7. Betty3

    Betty3 Super Moderator

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    That's "generally" what we did if we were buying a group gift from the whole dept. (wedding gift, retirement gift......). One or two people would go buy it with the money collected.
     
  8. ElleMD

    ElleMD Well-Known Member

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    You are way overthinking this. Such "office pools" are common and there is no need for regulation or a financial statement. It can be easier and less intrusive to collect for multiple events at once rather than hitting folks up every few weeks or several times a month for various reasons. If your wife has reason to think others are inappropriately using the funds, she does not need to contribute. I'd suggest for the good will of the order that she offer to be the one to bring the paper products for the events or some such other task in lieu of participation.
     

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