Recourse for non-payment of wages
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Recourse for non-payment of wages
The company has been struggling financially and got “behind” on payroll, I found a new job and gave my two weeks notice and provided them with a detail of what was owed to me. For months all the employees have been told that funds are coming in and our payroll will be caught up but it still hasn’t happened. This is in the state of FL and I know the labor laws are few but I would like to know what my options are to collect this money, without coming out of pocket any further, for time worked in the beginning of the year.
Asked on May 13, 2009 under Employment Labor Law, Florida
MD, Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney
Answered 14 years ago | Contributor
Well, sometimes you have to sue (which means some money for court costs) to get your money. Have you spoken to your state's Dept of Labor? State agencies can oftentimes help pursuade such employers to pay so the employers can avoid other consequences.
See the following: http://www.stateofflorida.com/Portal/DesktopDefault.aspx?tabid=10
A common remedy for wage violations is an order that the employer make up the difference between what the employee was paid and the amount he or she should have been paid. The amount of this sum is often referred to as "back pay." Among other Department of Labor programs, back wages may be ordered in cases under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) on the various federal contract labor statutes.
Listed below are methods which the FLSA provides for recovering unpaid minimum and/or overtime wages.
(1) The Wage and Hour Division may supervise payment of back wages.
(2) The Secretary of Labor may bring suit for back wages and an equal amount as liquidated damages.
(3) An employee may file a private suit for back pay and an equal amount as liquidated damages, plus attorney's fees and court costs.
(4) The Secretary of Labor may obtain an injunction to restrain any person from violating the FLSA, including the unlawful withholding of proper minimum wage and overtime pay.
An employee may not bring suit under the FLSA if he or she has been paid back wages under the supervision of the Wage and Hour Division or if the Secretary of Labor has already filed suit to recover the wages.
Generally, a two-year statute of limitations applies to the recovery of back pay. In the case of willful violations, a three-year statute of limitations applies.
Back wages also are available for underpayments to employees under the Davis-Bacon and Related Acts and the Service Contract Act, among other laws enforced and administered by the Wage and Hour Division.
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