Are you suffering from unfair wage system in your company? Does your employer make unnecessary deductions in your salary? Do you receive less than the minimum hour rate?
If you say yes to one or all of these questions, you may file a wage claim.
California laws allow you to assert your rights and report illegal practices of employers.
One of these is the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).
This law stipulates regulations on minimum hour wage, compensation system, and overtime pay. It restricts illegal employment practices such as child labor, unfair pay system, and non compliance with statutory requirements.
It oversees labor practices of both public and private offices.
In 2008, the state of California required all employers to give a minimum wage of eight dollars per hour, with the exemption of certain employees as salespeople, family workers, and student assistants.
Employers are required to pay for overtime hours in excess of standard eight hours. Overtime pay must be given at the seventh day. Workers must receive double pay for work rendered beyond 12 hours, or for working on the seventh day.
Non-exempt and at-will employees are entitled for overtime pay.
Exempt employees are not entitled to overtime pay. However, the employee may clarify his/her employment status and contest discrepancy on the work nature. "Exempt employees" are key personnel who handle at least 50 percent of managerial task and have vital decision-making authority in the company.
Examples of exempt employees are: executives, admin officers, managers, and key leaders. Exempt employees must manage more than two people and have authority in policy-making tasks.
Some employers misclassify employees so as to avoid giving overtime pay. Some examples of misclassified employees are:
2. Technical writers
3. Commission-based workers
4. Non-office based employees
5. Freelance workers
If you are misclassified and are deprived of overtime pay, you may assert a wage claim.
Here are the steps in filing a wage claim:
1. Go to the Division of Labor Standards Enforcement (DLSE) and fill up DLSE form 1.
2. Attach supporting documents to substantiate your claim.
3. File your claim at your designated DLSE office. Usually, this is within the location of your workplace.
You can also file a claim against other unfair wage practices such as:
1. Unpaid salary/ commissions
2. Refusing to give back pay, accrued leaves, and benefits upon termination of employment
3. Unwarranted and illegal deductions
4. Refusing to pay official business expenses
5. Refusing to provide meal and break time
Consult with an Unfair Wages Expert, Employment Law Attorney in Los Angeles to learn more on how you can file a Wage claim.