Unpaid Wages

You show up to work for every workday, and put in your hours. Maybe you even enjoy your job and are happy to be there. But then one day you fail to receive your paycheck. Or perhaps you did get paid, but not for all of your hours, or not for overtime. No matter how much you might love your work, you likely expected, and probably needed to get paid.

Perhaps it was just an error, but what if it wasn’t? What if you get a vague promise to be compensated in the future, or your pay rate is decreased after you already did the work? Scenarios such as these are actually fairly common. They are also illegal.

Failing to pay an employee for work they have completed is a violation of the Federal Labor Standards Act (FLSA). The FLSA applies to most places of business and sets certain minimum requirements for employees. The federal minimum wage and the requirement to pay overtime are both part of the FLSA. There are additional laws providing additional protections, and state laws that might set higher minimum wages, but if your employer has not paid you, then at the very least they are likely in violation of the FLSA. If you have an employment contract, your employer may also be liable to you as a result of breaching your contract.

Here are some ways that you might find yourself the victim of unpaid wages:

  1. You do not receive a paycheck – This could be a simple error on your employer’s part, or on the part of the bank. Also make sure you turned in your time sheet or reported your hours if that is something you are required to do for your job. If the reason for your failure to get paid is not an innocent mistake, then be sure to document the pay you are missing, as well as any expenses resulting from your failure to get paid.
  2. You get a check, but it bounces – Again, keep all of your records, including the pay stub, and be sure that there was not an innocent error.
  3. I got my paycheck, but it did not include all of the hours I worked  You should check and be sure it was not just a mistake, and again, keep all related records as evidence of the missing pay.
  4. I am not being paid overtime – While some positions do not require that an employee be paid overtime, many workers are required to be paid time and a half for hours they work exceeding 40 hours a week. If you are not an executive, or administrator, or paid a high salary, you could be covered, and your employer might be in violation of the law for not paying you time and a half for overtime hours.
  5. My employer pays me less than the federal or state minimum wage – Your employer is required to pay you at least the minimum wage. If the state and federal minimum wages differ, they must pay you the higher of the two. Failing to pay this sum is a violation of the law.
  6. My employer makes me work off the clock – Your employer must pay you for all of the hours you work. You cannot be asked to work for free.
  7. I was owed a commission or bonus, but my employer did not give it to me – There is no legal requirement to pay commissions and bonuses, but if either of these was included in your contract, and you did not receive it, then your employer has breached your contract and should be held liable.

If any of these scenarios applies to you, you could be the victim of wage theft, unpaid wages, or a breach of contract. You should seek out legal counsel in order to pursue just compensation and to ensure the protection of your rights.

Contact Stern Law, PLLC for A Free Consultation

At Stern Law, PLLC, we have compassionate and caring attorneys ready to work with you to find the best solution to your employment law related legal issues. Contact Stern Law, PLLC today at (844) 808-7529 for a free consolation with an experienced employment attorney.

Contact us 24/7. Call or click now! (844) 808-7529
Request a Call Back Start Your Case