Can I Sue My Employer for Unpaid Wages?

closeup paycheck concept

When you signed your employee contract, there was likely a clause that stated the hourly rate or yearly salary for your offered job position. So when you start at your workplace and you are not earning what was originally promised to you, this must be addressed. Continue reading to learn whether you can sue your employer for unpaid wages and how an experienced New York wage claim lawyer at Bell Law Group can help you in this pursuit of compensation.

What are the laws for agreed-upon wages?

There are both federal and New York State wage and hour laws in place regarding agreed-upon wages, the most notable one being the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). Specifically, this Act gives you, as an employee, the following rights:

  • You are entitled to get paid for the rate you were promised (unless there was prior notice given).
  • You are entitled to get be provided the wage supplements you were promised (including paid vacation time, paid sick leave, and reimbursement of expenses).
  • You are entitled to get paid for all the hours you worked (including your hours for on-the-job training).
  • You are entitled to get paid for all the tips you earned.
  • You are entitled to get paid back after a bounced paycheck due to “not sufficient funds.”

With that being said, if your employer is found in violation of any of the above provisions, they may be guilty of a misdemeanor.

Can I file a claim against my employer for unpaid wages?

There is no question that you should sue your employer if they do not distribute your agreed-upon wages. Of note, the FLSA calls for the recovery of unpaid wages regardless of whether you still work for your employer, you have since quit, or you have since gotten fired. And you may receive such recovery in any of the following ways:

  • You may be entitled to receive back wages of up to two years.
  • You may be entitled to receive liquidated damages of up to three times the amount of your back wages.
  • You may be entitled to receive punitive damages to discourage your employer from engaging in similar misconduct in the future.
  • You may be entitled to receive reasonable compensation for your attorney fees, filing fees, and court costs.

As you may likely conclude yourself, you have an important case on your hand that requires immediate action. That is, the FLSA may be unable to protect you if you wait longer than two years to bring your wage and hour claim forward. This is because, at that point, you may become permanently barred from suing. So do not hesitate in reaching out to a skilled New York wage and hour lawyer at Bell Law Group.

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