Our goal with this paystub guide is to cut the fluff and answer all of the questions that you guys have been asking. This is a comprehensive guide that will be updated with additional questions and answers. You can think of it as your go-to place for everything pay stubs.

1. What is the meaning of Paystub

We define a paystub as a receipt of work completed and money earned.

It's the same concept as getting a receipt when you pay for an item at the store. 

A pay stub is a receipt that details the amount of money you were paid for the amount of work you completed in a certain time period.

2. Why do you need a Paystub?

You need paystubs to serve as proof of work as well as a record of work. This is because you will likely be asked for a record of your work history or proof of income. A paystub is both of those.

3. Is paystub one or two words?

Pay Stub is two words, however, it is common for people to combine both words. Both versions are widely accepted.

The confusion here is clear, our advice is to use whichever you are comfortable with.

4. What is a pay stub called?

A pay stub is called many names. Some of the most common names are Paycheck stub, paystub as one word, earnings statement, payslip, check stub, payroll stub, payroll check, payroll slip, and earnings slip. 

5. Is Paystub the same as payroll?

Paystub and payroll are similar in that are based on the same system. However, payroll is the total a company is to pay to it's employees. Paystubs are a part of payroll but they are not the same thing. Think of paystubs as a branch on the payroll tree.

6. How to read a pay stub?

You read a paystub by first identifying the income and deduction sections. Paystubs should be laid out in clear sections. Employee info, company info, company filing info, date info, income info and deduction info. The areas that stand out the most are the gross pay and the net pay sections. 

7 What are paycheck stub abbreviations?

The common abbreviations found on paycheck stubs are ssn, ytd fica, chk no, vchr no, and ein.


  • SSN is short for social security number

  • YTD is short for Year To Date. This is in reference to the total  of other earnings or deduction up until the specific date listed on the paystub.

  • Fica is short for Federal Insurance Contributions Act. You can read more about FICA here 

  • Chk No & Vchr No are short for Check Number. This is an internal tally control for the business issuing the paycheck stub.

  • EIN is short for Employee Identification number. This is a number issued to companies by the IRS. Think of it as a ssn for Businesses. You can apply for an ein for your business by visiting the IRS 


Pay for Jury Duty


Family Medical Leave


Miscellaneous Pay


Holiday Pay


Federal Unemployment Tax

Child Supp

Child Support


California State Disability Insurance


State Employment Insurance


401k Retirement Contribution




With Holding


Paid Time Off 


Health Savings Account


Flexible Spending Account


Bereavement Pay

8. Can Paystubs be online?

Yes, paystubs can be online. In fact, according to this study over 45% of businesses in America outsource their payroll to companies that provide their paystubs online.

 It is becoming more and more common for small businesses to issue employees paystubs online. 

It saves both the employee and the business a ton of time and hassle, paper, and other resources. 

9. Pay Stubs have logos (paystub generator with logo)

Yes, some pay stubs do have logos on them. The logos can be placed on a pay stub in many different ways. Some pay stubs have the logo in the background and they call that a watermark. Other pay stubs have a logo in either the top left-hand corner on the bottom of the pay stub depending on the size. 

Pay stubs from smaller businesses are known to not have logos on them and only contain the business name. 

Another way that businesses brand their pay stubs is by including company abbreviations as a form of a watermark.

10. What are pay stubs used for?

Pay stubs as we discussed above are used as a receipt to the worker for the pay that they receive for their work. 

Pay stubs allow the business to itemize the work that was completed in the pay that was paid out as well as any withholdings such as federal and state tax. Pay stubs are also used by the employee as proof of work and proof of income. 

Both of these can be asked for by apartment complexes car dealerships and other financial institutions. Pay stubs also serve as a record of employment for the employees. 

11. How to get pay stubs from previous employer?

You can get your pay stubs from your previous employer by calling the company if it's a small company you should be able to speak with the payroll department immediately.

If it's a larger company then you may have to contact the human resources department. When you contact the human resource department you will want to First make a phone call record the representative that you spoke with and then send a follow-up email recapping the conversation and the request for your pay stubs. 

If your company uses a larger payroll service then you may be in luck and the only phone call you required to make it to that payroll provider.


12. How do I get a pay stub if I have a direct deposit?


Getting your pay stub if you have direct deposit is easy. In most cases, it’s as easy as checking your email. Paystubs are emailed in briefs that show the deposited amount while requiring you to click the email to see the detailed stub.

Contact your company's payroll provider or ask your boss to send you a link to your most recent pay stub. Your boss will then be responsible for contacting HR and making sure that you have your pay stub.

 In many cases, your pay stub may be mailed to you or emailed to you weekly even if you have a direct deposit. If your employer is unable to email you the most recent pay stub from your direct deposit, you can also use your bank stubs bank statements to review your most recent pay. 

13. Can I get pay stubs from my bank?

It would seem like your bank would have a copy of your paycheck stub because they receive your direct deposit. However, your bank does not have access to your pay stubs unless they are your payroll provider. It is legal to ask for pay stubs and yes pay stubs can be verified. 

14. How to get pay stubs online?

You can get pay stubs online by asking your employer to provide you with access to your online payroll provider. This is normally a very quick process where you enter your email address and password that may have been provided to you during orientation in the initial setup of the payroll.

You can also get pay stubs online by using the Real Check Stubs online paystub generator. The online pay stub generator will allow you to create your pay stubs and download them instantly as well as have a pdf version of your pay stub emailed to you.

15. Can I create my own Paystub

Yes, you can create your own pay stub. This is especially true if you are self-employed or a freelancer, contractor, or entrepreneur.  In fact, it is extremely common for this group of business people to create their own pay stubs.

It is a lot cheaper, faster, and easier to create your own pay stub when compared to using a large expensive payroll service. 

Click here to create your own paystub. 

16. What is the best pay stub generator(best paycheck stub maker)

The best pay stub generator is the Real Check Stubs generator. This is because the Real Check Stub generator offers the most template options and the most customizable templates in the market. 

The templates that are provided by real check stubs are professional and detailed which are very important when you are creating a paycheck stub.

Check out our paystub template guide here

17. What app can I use to make pay stubs

RealCheckStubs.com is the app you can use to make pay stubs. You are not required to download any app from the App Store. 

You can enter realcheckstubs.com in your browser and create your pay stub in less than 1 minute.

18. How can I make my own Paystub

You can use a pay stub generator found here to make your own pay stub. In order to create your pay stub, you are going to need some basic information about your company such as the legal company name and full address. 

You will also need information about the employee listed on the paystub, such as their full name, address, social security number, and if they are classified as an employee or contractor.

Income and deductions are the next sections to address. Here you will need to know if the employee is paid hourly or by salary. Once you’ve gathered that information you would enter either the numbers worked or the salary amount as well as make any adjustments to the withholding calculations that are necessary. 

19. How do I make a realistic pay stub?

You make a realistic pay stub by entering the real information. The mistake that people make when creating their pay stub is they enter inaccurate information and pass it off as a real pay stub when in fact they are fake check stubs. 

After you enter accurate details in your pay stub the next thing you can do is make sure that you have complete addresses,  proper grammar, no round numbers(unless it’s accurate), and a watermark.

20. Do pay stub generators work?

Yes, paystub generators do work. A pay stub generator is simply a paystub creator that calculates what your payroll would have been based on the information that you provided. In cases when the information is accurate the pay stub generator work perfectly. 

However, when the information is either incomplete or inaccurate the pay stub may come out incomplete or incorrect. The pay stub generators are a reflection of the information entered.

21. Are pay stub generators legal?

Yes, pay stub generators are legal. Business owners entrepreneurs Freelancers contractors in solopreneurs all need to pay stub generators to record their pay. They also use pay stub generators to record the pay of their team members whether that is an employee of the company or an outside contractor.

Smaller businesses are not accustomed to using larger payroll systems because of the additional complexities and expenses.


22. Is a pay stub the same as a w2?

No, a pay stub is not the same as a W-2. A W-2 is issued at the end of the year and tally your complete earnings and deductions on one statement as reported to the IRS. Employers are required to provide you with a W-2 to have a complete breakdown of all of your earnings that ductions and benefits for the year. You will also use your W-2 to file your annual tax return.


A pay stub is issued either weekly or bi-weekly or monthly. It also shows a breakdown of your income but only up until the point of issuance.