You need to take action if your manager is withholding your hard earned wages. You should seek legal advice if, for example, your manager is requiring you to work off the clock without recording the time in the employer’s timekeeping system, otherwise withholding wages, or deducting from your wages for items other than what the law allows.
You should keep written records of your work time and pay if you believe your employer is withholding your wages or not paying you for all of your work time. For example, you should start tracking your hours on your own. You can track your hours daily in writing and keep it away from the workplace. Also, you should download your paychecks to a safe place if you receive electronic paychecks. Employees often find that they no longer have access to their electronic paychecks when they need them.
You have several options if you are trying to obtain money for wages that is owed to you. You can take the following steps.
Ask Your Manager
Be sure to bring up the missing wages to the payroll, your boss or manager, or your union rep, if you have one. It could have been a simple mistake. You will learn why the employer is withholding your wages if the employer will answer your question. Often times, the employer will not tell you or other employees why the employer is withholding wages. The employer hopes you will go away and not raise it further if the employer ignores your request.
However, if this doesn’t get results or the employer ignores your questions, you need to take further action. Your next step could be to contact a government agency.
File a Complaint With the Labor Board
Each state generally has laws which govern wage payments. There are also federal laws that govern wage payments including overtime.
Federal and state agencies can help you with wage claims and let you know what steps to take in filing a wage complaint. For example, the Department of Labor (“DOL”) Wage and Hour Division investigates unpaid federal minimum wage and overtime claims. You need to file a complaint with the DOL to start an investigation into your claim. Employees often find that they have difficulty in contacting the DOL, and a DOL investigation can take many months if not years.
As such, it often makes sense for the employee to contact an employment lawyer to discuss a wage withholding claim. An employment lawyer has experience with this type of case and knows what to do and what to expect.
Seek Legal Advice
You should contact an employment lawyer if you don’t get the results you hoped for or you want to get legal advice on your situation. Consulting a lawyer is a smart move, even if it is just to make sure you are on the right track.
A lawyer can help you file a civil suit against your employer to retrieve the overtime and wage money that is owed to you. A lawyer will typically get more money for you faster than the government agency because the lawyer can actually sue for more wages and focus on your case.
You must understand that your employer is consulting their lawyer, so why wouldn’t you? The employer is often in the wrong. Sometimes, if your employer knows you are talking to a lawyer, they will pay the money they owe you.
Many first-time consultations are free, and many employment lawyers don’t get paid unless you do. Most employee wage attorneys take cases on contingency which means that you do not pay anything until you recover overtime wages through a settlement or trial.
Make sure you check at your workplace and see if there are any more people in the same situation. Too often, people are scared to confront their employers and that is how the employers continue to get away with it. Employers will often take wage cases more seriously if multiple employees make the same wage claim.
Rowdy Meeks Legal Group LLC
Rowdy Meeks Legal Group LLC is here for you. We focus our legal practice on vigorously representing employees in nationwide collective and class action pay claims including unpaid wage and overtime claims.
We have the experience, resources, and track record to help you get the pay you earn. We have successfully taken on some of the biggest companies in the U.S.
We will help you get the pay you deserve. And, we are in the business of winning. Contact us today for a consultation or more information. Get the money you worked so hard for.