If you are an hourly worker, you deserve compensation for all of the time you put in on the job. Unfortunately, plenty of companies will try to minimize how much they have to pay you.
Wage theft is a serious issue that affects hourly workers across the United States. Being able to identify some of the more common tricks used to steal wages from workers can help you avoid falling victim to these unfair practices.
Requiring unpaid work
Does your employer expect you to do cleaning or prep work before you start your shift or after you clock out? Do they expect you to respond to emails, social media messages or phone calls while at home for the weekend? The more unpaid labor your employer demands of you, the stronger your potential wage claim against them.
Altering time clock records for the company’s benefit
Switching over to digital timekeeping software has made clocking in and out more accurate than ever before. However, it also makes it easier for managers to change internal records and reduce workers’ pay.
If you notice any sort of discrepancy between your records of when you work and the company’s, that could be a sign that someone changed the digital records of when you clocked in and out, possibly to deny you pay or overtime wages.
Inappropriately denying overtime
Did your manager ask you to stay late when someone called in sick on a Friday night, only for you not to get paid for those extra hours because the company has a policy against unapproved overtime?
Regardless of the internal policies the company may have, if you work more than 40 hours, you deserve overtime pay. Refusing overtime wages is a common form of wage theft that many workers feel they cannot fight.
Understanding the different forms of wage theft can help you decide if you have grounds to bring a wage claim against your employer.