Is it illegal for our employer to continuously pay us late?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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Is it illegal for our employer to continuously pay us late?

I’m seeking legal advice for a company I work for and they have a problem with

consistently paying us late. In the 4 months I’ve been there they’ve payed on

time once. We waited the longest up to 7 days 5 business days to be paid.

Workers have told me they have went times where they weren’t paid for a whole month. However, the company continuously expect us to show up to work when we can’t even get to work due to not having money for gas, etc. My family has been put on the street twice since I started working here. The owner of the company comes up with excuses saying he’s waiting for someone’s check. There was recently a hurricane and my pay day was several days before it. Yet, he used it as an excuse that the hurricane is causing a delay on our pays.

Asked on October 9, 2018 under Employment Labor Law, Hawaii


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

It's not legal but there is not much you can do about it, so long as you do get paid, even if late: that's because were to take legal action, the fact that they pay you before the case/action could possibly get heard means that it would be "moot," or irrelevant, when heard. That's because all you can get is what you are owed, and so if the settle up before a legal matter comes up, there is nothing to take action for. They are not responsible for the fact that your family appears to not have a "rainy day" fund or savings, or that you appear to  live paycheck-to-paycheck: they do not set or control your spending or savings levels. Really, all you can do is look for a better, more considerate and stable job.

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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