Though the federal Far Labour Standard Act has minimum rules set for employers to follow, different states have their own laws to protect their employees. California is one such state that has strict laws for the protection of the employees. If your employer has failed to pay your final paycheck, you are not only entitled to get your final paycheck with the help of law but also can recover the penalties for the unpaid wages as a way to punish the employer for violating the laws of the land.
The most common wage violation that happens are
- Paying a minimum wage per hour to the employees than intended
- Failing to pay the employees for every hour they worked
- Failing to pay for the overtime hours
- Failing to pay the employees for the breaks during workday
Penalties for Wage Violations
In the case of the above violations that happen to you, you are entitled to collect the penalty in addition to the unpaid wages. Penalties are levied for unpaid wages which include
- Meal Period: If you have missed one or more meal periods, one hour of pay for each day you missed.
- Rest Break: If you have missed one or more rest breaks, then one hour of pay for each day you missed.
- Liquidated Damages
- Violations in Paystub: If the employer fails to provide the required information in the paystub about the employee’s wages and hours of work, the employee can collect $50 for the first violation and $100 for the subsequent ones.
- Penalties for Waiting time: If the employer fails to pay the final payment on time, then the employee can claim the average daily wage per day till the date of payment (to a maximum of 30 days)
- Violations on Sick Leave: If the employer fails to provide paid sick leave, the employee can claim thrice the value of the paid sick leave to a total sum of $4000.
Employees can file a wage claim in the California Labour Commissioner’s office or file a lawsuit in court if the employer fails to pay the final paycheck.