Iowa Wage Payment Collection Act


The Iowa Wage Payment Collection Act protects employees from employers who fail to pay wages owed to an employee. Wages, as defined in the act, can encompass more than just compensation owed for labor or services. It can also include vacation, holiday, sick leave, and severance payments which are due an employee under an agreement or policy of the employer, benefit payments under an agreement or policy of the employer, and expenses incurred and recoverable under a health benefit plan. The key is whether an agreement or policy providing for payment of these items exists. In most instances the agreement or policy will be contained in an employee handbook. It can, however, take the form of an unwritten policy.


An employer is required to pay all wages earned no later than the next payday for the pay period in which the wages were earned. Employees paid on a commission basis, however, may have to wait up to thirty days from the date of termination to get their final paycheck.


An employee who has a claim against an employer for wages may bring an action in an Iowa district court or, if the claim is less than $5,000.00, through the Iowa Department of Labor. A claim form for the Iowa Department of Labor can be found here and the steps the Department follows can be found here.  Claims for wages must be brought within two years after the wages were earned.


Photo on flickr by jenn_jenn.


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Comments (4) Read through and enter the discussion with the form at the end
eileen - February 14, 2011 4:02 PM

hello, my husband worked for supreme trucking for about 5 days he worked 18 hours first week which should have got a check on this past wednesday and then drove a load and should receive a check this wednesday, i have called still no check the owner said he quit he can do what ever he wants and hangs up on me what can we do

Liz Overton - February 16, 2011 7:24 AM


Assuming you are located in Iowa you can contact your local Iowa Workforce Development office for assistance. Please use the links above.

William - November 10, 2011 8:19 PM

hi, can a employer hold your wages for 1 month because he or she feels u where in breach of contract even if u had multiple rises in pay and no oral of written contract was made by not having a valid drivers licenses?

Liz - November 14, 2011 8:48 AM


Under Iowa law, an employer is required to pay employees at regular intervals. Termination pay is due the next pay period after termination. There are many things that can alter the general rule, however.

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