As an employee, you generally have the legal right to receive fair wages and, when applicable, enjoy specific benefits like overtime pay. Unfortunately, not all employers honor this right; some even commit wage theft.
What is wage theft?
Wage theft is when your employer does not give you the benefits you earned or should be getting, including proper wages, rest breaks, overtime pay and workers’ compensation. Every year, millions of workers in the U.S. fall victim to this misconduct.
What are examples of wage theft?
Wage theft is not always as apparent as a blatant refusal to pay your salary. Some examples of it are more subtle than others, such as the following:
- Your paycheck shows incorrect figures, even after you repeatedly brought the mistake to your employers’ attention.
- You buy something for your employer or organization, but you do not receive any reimbursement for it.
- Your employer does not explain how your overtime pay and other benefits work, preventing you from taking advantage of them.
- The company classifies you as an independent contractor, but your responsibilities and hours are similar to a full-time employee. You also do not receive the same benefits as a full-time employee.
- The company asks you to cut your lunch break short and do more work without appropriate compensation.
- Your employer does not give you your tips.
- Upon leaving your job, your employer refuses to give you your final pay.
Consulting with an employment law attorney can be a big help if you believe your employer is committing wage theft. They can confirm if your employer is violating the law and help you build a strong case that protects your rights as an employee.