Each Friday, your company hands you your pay stub—what do you do with it?

Many of us don’t pay much attention to it, as we’re more focused on the actual paycheck. However, your weekly pay stub is one of the most important documents when it comes to keeping track of your earnings.

If you’ve never paid much attention to your pay stub, you should get into the habit of reading it each week. Why? Keep reading to learn five critical reasons to read your pay stub.

1. Make Sure You’ve Been Paid Correctly

Reading your pay stub is important to find out if you’ve been paid the correct amount. If you work varied hours each week, you need to make sure you’ve been paid the right amount, as pay errors can happen easily.

Your payslip will always list your total pay for that pay period, before and after tax.

2. Check Your Annual Leave Balance

Planning a vacation? If so, you’ll need to know how many annual leave days you have left to make sure you can take the time off.

Your pay stub will include how many annual leave hours you have left, along with how many have already been used for the year.

If you’re trying to figure out pay stubs as a small business owner, check out this free pay stub template.

3. See How Much Tax You Paid

Which tax bracket will you fall into this year? The amount of income we earn determines how much tax we will have to pay each year.

When reading your pay stub, look for the amount of tax you’ve paid, both state and federal. This will help you prepare when it comes to tax time in April.

4. Do You Have Any Sick Days Left?

Your pay stub will tell you how many sick days you’ve used and how many are left. It’s always a good idea to keep an eye on sick days, as you may need to take unpaid leave if you fall unwell and have no sick days left.

If you need to plan a medical procedure or appointment, you may want to wait until you’ve accrued more sick leave.

5. Ensure Your Hours Are Correct

Always read your pay stub to make sure your worked hours are listed correctly. This way, you can see if you’ve been paid the correct amount.

Did you work any overtime this week? If so, you’re entitled to more pay, so check that you’ve been paid correctly for the amount of time worked.

Read Your Pay Stub Each Payday

Before you toss your pay stub in your pocket, take the time to read it, for the reasons above. You work hard each week for the company, and you need to make sure that you’ve been correctly compensated for your efforts.

Get in the habit of quickly reading your pay stub each week, double-checking that everything looks correct. You may even want to save them in a file at home, in case there’s ever any discrepancies in the future.

By reading your pay stub, you ensure your pay and tax are correct, so get started today!

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