Ways To Claim Unpaid Wages

When an individual's employer doesn't pay them the wages that they are owed, this is considered unpaid wages. This may occur for a variety of reasons. Thankfully, it can be easy to determine how to get paid if you know what you are looking for and owed some unpaid wages. The government's Labor Department may help you file claims against your employer in order to ensure you receive all of your back wages. This is the difference between getting the pay you received and what you are actually owed. Below are the most common unpaid wage violations that employers make.

Minimum Wage Violations

The federal government's minimum wage is set at $7.25 an hour. Each state must set their own minimum wage and are allowed to set it higher than the federal minimum wage. However, they are not allowed to make it less. Any workers that make below the federal minimum wage is legally not receiving the compensation they deserve. Any employer who pays above the minimum wage but then makes deductions that cause an employee's paycheck to turn out to be below the minimum wage are also in violation of the federal law.

Hourly Violations

Employees who are paid hourly need to be paid for the specific time they put in. If an employer tries to get around this law by not counting breaks or meals for their workers or chooses not to pay for employees doing work outside of their scheduled hours will also be in violation. There are some employers who try to get around this law by refusing to pay their workers for attending required training, classes or for travel between work sites. If the time put into these events are required as part of the employee's job, they need to be paid their correct wages as if they were working regular hours.

Failure To Pay Employees On Requisite Paydays

The government's Fair Labor Standards Act does not have a required time limit for how employees are paid. It is not a violation of the law to take a long time giving your employee their paycheck. However, many states have set requirements that employers must follow involving how often their employees need to be paid. Typically, they are required to pay their employees at least every 2 weeks or twice a month. If your employer violates the state Payday Law, you are still able to file an unpaid wage claim against them to receive your back pay. If you left your job a long time ago and still have not received your paycheck, your former employer may still be in violation of the state's law and you would be able to claim those unpaid wages.

Failure To Pay Vacation Time Pay

Employers throughout the country are not legally bound to pay their employees for vacation. However, if an employee is offered to be paid during their vacation and then they don't receive that pay, this is a violation of the state law. If you accrue vacation time with your employer and were promised pay for it, you're entitled to be compensated.

Paycheck Tips And Deductions

There are many other violations that employers may make that could be less obvious to their employees. This is because what is mostly allowed in each state will vary widely. In many states, it is legal for employers to charge their employees for their uniform and tools that are necessary for the job. This means that an employer may take that out of their paychecks. Also, certain states will allow for paycheck deductions to be made in order to pay a debt that employees may owe to the company that they work for. In other states, however, this could be a violation of the law.

Most states also vary when it comes to how they deduct for tips. Essentially, employers are allowed to keep their tips without sharing any with their employers. In other states, employers are allowed to make paycheck deductions on those tips. In many states, employers are also required to make sure their employees get minimum wage on top of the tips they earn.

How To Uncover Unpaid Wages

When you feel you have unpaid wages due to you from your employer or former employer, you should contact your Secretary of Labor's office. They will help you file a claim in order to get what you rightfully deserve.