Can I file a claim for not being paid for my labor ?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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Can I file a claim for not being paid for my labor ?

I recently stopped working at an employer and my
last paycheck was sent out via mail. However, before
I received the check I moved to a different address.
The person at my old address says it. never came in
the mail. I called my old employer and they said for
sure that it was sent out and that once its out they
cant issue a new one. Wouldnt I be able to file a
claim against my old employer for not paying me for
my labor ? because essentially thats what it is. Also
is there anything I can do against the person whose
house it was sent to because I feel like something
was done to my paycheck out of spite.

Asked on November 8, 2017 under Employment Labor Law, Maryland


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

IF the check was never cashed, your employer should stop payment on it and reissue you a new one (though they may charge you for the stop payment cost, if any). If they won't, you could sue them for the money, though if are not local any longer, you might pay more, in terms of time, travel costs, etc. to sue in the employer's county (where you'd most likely have to sue) than it's worth, depending on how far you are, how much the check was for, etc.
If the check was cashed by someone, however, they do not need to send you a new one: they did their job/honored their responsibilities by sending the check to what they had on file as your address, and if it's stolen, they are not required to re-pay you the money, any more than they'd have to re-pay you if the money or check was stolen from your wallet.
You can't sue the person to house the check was sent, or take other legal action against them, without evidence of wrongdoing: the fact that you "feel" that they did something to your check is wholly irrelevant.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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