California law is clear: California employees are not required to receive wage payments via direct deposit.  Employers must provide employee choice with regard to receipt of pay.

Labor Code section 213 permits employers to pay employees via direct deposit into an account of the employee’s choosing, so long as the employee authorizes direct deposit. However, employers cannot require the California employee to enroll in direct deposit as a condition of employment. In another DLSE opinion letter, the DLSE has stated, “[e]mployee choice is thus a fundamental condition for payment methods utilizing direct deposits under California wage payment law.” DLSE, Op. Letter 2008.07.07, at 6.  If an employer attempts to pay an employee via direct deposit without authorization or requires the employee enroll in direct deposit to keep their job, the employer will be subject to civil penalties.