Q: I work as a contractor for a company that has lost its government contract. The winning company wants to hire most of the employees but wants us to show our last pay stub. We are looking for an opinion on this request.
A: If you really need the gig, you may not have a choice. First, ask what information the new company wants and whether it will accept another form of proof; i.e., an offer letter or promotion notice from your current employer. If only a pay stub will do, black out everything not wage-related: Social Security number, marital status, tax allowances, tax deductions and leave balances. Until the new company issues your paycheck, that information is none of its business.
Thanks to Elaine Fitch, of the Washington-based Kalijarvi, Chuzi, Newman and Fitch employment law firm.
Karla L. Miller writes an advice column on navigating the modern workplace. Each week she will answer one or two questions from readers. Miller has written for and edited tax publications for 16 years, most recently for the accounting firm KPMG's Washington National Tax office. You can find her on Twitter, @KarlaAtWork.