What are the Proper Steps to Filing a Wage & Hour Complaint?

Every employee deserves fair payment for all of the hours they work for their employer. This should be something that everyone agrees on and understands, and yet wage and hour violations are more common than you might know. You might even have been subjected to unfair wage and hour violations and not realize it yet.

There are a few common ways that wage and hour violations can occur:

  • You are paid anything less than your agreed upon hourly wage or salary.
  • You are not provided overtime pay despite being eligible to earn it.
  • You are paid less than minimum wage.
  • You are not provided meal breaks as required by California law.
  • You are not given your fair portion of pooled tips.
  • You are not paid for attending a mandatory meeting or training session.
  • Your hours are incorrectly clocked and reduced.
  • Your wage is reduced to pay for required work supplies or uniforms.

What to Do If Your Wages are Unpaid

Think you might have been shorted wages or hours in any way by your employer? You have to take action to set things right. Otherwise, you will likely encounter future wage and hour violations, or others in your workplace will. Protect yourself and all your coworkers by deciding to make a wage and hour complaint.

Follow these steps to best file a wage and hour complaint in California:

  1. Call an employment law attorney: Before you dive too far into the process of filing a wage and hour complaint, you should start by talking with an employment lawyer, like Attorney Bill Marder of Polaris Law Group. He can help review your situation during a free case consultation and confirm that it does appear that your employer violated your rights by specifying how the violation occurred.
  2. Collect relevant data: You will want to build your case solidly so it can stand up to any challenges that will be brought by your employer. Get copies of your timesheets, paystubs, and any internal documents related to your wages, salary, or hours. Review these documents with your employment lawyer to highlight when and how the violations occurred.
  3. Communicate with coworkers: As mentioned, wage and hour violations tend to be companywide, so it is possible that your coworkers are also being mistreated and underpaid. You have the right to talk to your coworkers about any work-related concerns, but discretion can be valuable in such a sensitive situation. To see if other employees at your company have similar complaints, talk to your attorney about how and why to reach out to them.
  4. File your DLSE form: The official beginning of most wage and hour complaints occurs when you file a Department of Labor Standards Enforcement (DLSE) form with a DLSE Wage Claim Office. There are a few types of forms based on how you believe your employment rights were violated. Let your employment lawyer help you pick, fill out, and file the right one.

For comprehensive legal assistance and representation for your unpaid wages claim in Northern California, call on Polaris Law Group at (888) 796-4010. We bring decades of employment law experience to every case we work. Start your case with confidence by scheduling a no-cost consultation with our firm today.

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