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What can I do?

It’s only my boss and I which work at our store; the owners live 5 hours away. He has had 2 months to hire someone yet hasn’t yet. I don’t receive lunch breaks or any type of breaks when I’m working alone and throughout the day I’m exhausted. Also, I just got paid today but I don’t believe it was the full amount. I worked 83 hours the past 2 and a half weeks and only received a $700 paycheck. Is that normal? I don’t know what to do.

Asked on May 31, 2019 under Employment Labor Law, Washington

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 1 year ago | Contributor

1) There is nothing you can about being overworked: employers are allowed to understaff their businesses and overwork employees. In the U.S., under "employment at will" (which is the law in every state), if an employee feels overworked or that a job is impossible, his or her recourse is to quit and get a different or better job.
2) Are you (we presume) paid on an hourly basis, not an annual salary? If so, you must be paid at least minimum wage and overtime when work more than 40 hours in a single week. If you worked 83 hours in two-and-half weeks, while you don't indicate how many you worked in a single week, that could be less than 40 hours per week: we will assume there was no overtime. Minimum wage in your state is currently $12/hour. 83 hours at $12/hour is $996.00, but that is the gross, or pre-tax (pre-withholding) amount. If your pre-withholding/tax check was $996 or more, you were apparently paid the correct amount. If not, contact the state department of labor about filing a wage complaint.


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