if I’m paid under the table, cash, can I still do a case with the labor board if my employer won’t pay what I’m owed?

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if I’m paid under the table, cash, can I still do a case with the labor board if my employer won’t pay what I’m owed?

I work full time for someone who pays me under
the table weekly. I don’t receive any pay stubs,
I don’t have workers comp, no benefits, just cash
for hours worked. I’ve worked for the same person
for almost a year now. 40 hours plus a week, and
I get paid every Friday for the previous week of
work. I do keep track of my hours with the time
card, which my employer has paid me correctly
every payday since I started. but last week’s
paycheck and this week’s paycheck they are
refusing to give me. can I still file a case with
the California labor board, even though my
paycheck is cash

Asked on August 30, 2019 under Employment Labor Law, California

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 1 year ago | Contributor

Yes, you can bring a case to the labor board and/or sue (such as in small claims court, as your own attorney or "pro se") for the money. Bear in mind that if you were paid under the table and there have never been pay stubs, it may be difficult to prove that you were not paid: there is no evidence or documentation of payment generally, and so nothing (or no lack of anything) to point to this time to substantiate your case.
Also bear in mind if you were paid "under the table" then unless you were careful to report all income and pay all taxes due from you, then since there was no withholding, you have likely violated the tax laws: regardless of how they are paid, taxpayers have the obligation to make sure they report all income and pay the appropriate taxes. If this comes to the attention of the tax authorities, you could face liability.


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