Dublin Unpaid Wage and Hour Attorneys
Dublin Wage and Hour Lawyers Helping Workers Recover Unpaid Wages
Hardworking employees deserve to be paid their wages in full. When an employer fails to pay a worker properly, they can be held accountable for wage and hour violations under the Fair Labor Standards Act. The law requires all wages and commissions to be paid on time.
Erlich Law Firm is dedicated to helping workers recover the wages they are owed. Our Dublin unpaid wage and hour attorneys are experienced in handling all types of wage and hour cases, including unpaid overtime and commissions, minimum wage violations, worker misclassification, and more. Employment lawyer Jason Erlich has over 20 years of experience winning cases for employees across many industries whom their employers have wronged.
Common Types of Wage Theft
Maximizing profits while decreasing expenses is a priority for many employers. Unfortunately, sometimes that results in committing wage theft and paying workers less than what they are owed. Standard wage and hour violations that employees may report in Dublin workplaces include:
- Misclassification of independent contractors or exempt employees
- Unlawful tipping practices
- Mandatory off-the-clock work
- Failure to provide itemized wage statements
- Minimum wage violations
- Failure to pay earned overtime
- Missed meal breaks and rest breaks
- Withholding of sales commissions
While wage and hour violations can occur in any occupation, they are more prevalent in specific industries than others. Out of the 2,161 businesses in Dublin, the leading sectors in 2021 were retail, information, accommodation and food services, and education.
According to the California Department of Industrial Relations, the top three industries with the highest number of wage theft claims in the state in 2021 were health care with nearly 13 percent, retail with just over 11 percent, and the hospitality industry — including hotels, restaurants, and bars — with around 10 percent. California workers filed about 19,000 wage theft claims that year, totaling over $338 million in unpaid wages.
Dublin employers are required to follow California overtime laws. A non-exempt employee must be paid 1.5 times their regular pay rate for every eight hours worked in a day or more than 40 hours weekly.
The worker must receive double their regular pay rate for working more than 12 hours a day and for working over eight hours a day if working seven or more consecutive days.
Under California overtime law, employees are classified as either exempt or non-exempt. Only non-exempt workers are eligible for overtime pay, paid rest breaks, meal breaks, and minimum wage.
There are several exemptions to California’s overtime laws. Executive, administrative, or professional workers are typically exempt from overtime. However, sometimes workers mistakenly believe they are exempt from overtime. They end up leaving a substantial amount of unpaid overtime on the table.
Just because an employer pays you a salary, classifies you as an independent contractor, or claims you are exempt from overtime does not mean you are ineligible for overtime pay. For example, Dublin employees working in certain high-paying professional positions in industries like sales or information technology may qualify for overtime pay.
Additionally, employers may try various tactics to avoid paying overtime wages. Some examples include asking employees to complete tasks off the clock or misclassifying workers as exempt when they are non-exempt. Employers are responsible for maintaining accurate wage statements for all non-exempt workers detailing a breakdown of their pay, including the number of hours worked and pay rate.
Exemption classifications can be confusing. A Dublin unpaid wage and hour attorney can help determine whether you should be classified as exempt or non-exempt. Erlich Law Firm will examine your job duties and conditions of employment to determine if you are owed overtime pay.
Worker misclassification is a problem that has grown in severity in recent years. When workers are misclassified as independent contractors, they lose out on the benefits and protections that employees are typically afforded. This can include overtime pay, as well as meal and rest breaks.
California law has rules for meal and rest breaks. Non-exempt employees have the right to take a 30-minute unpaid meal break after every five hours they work. They are also entitled to a paid 10-minute rest break for every four hours of work.
According to the U.S. Department of Labor, 30 percent of employers have misclassified workers as independent contractors. Worker misclassification is prevalent in specific industries, including retail, trucking, hospitality, construction, and janitorial services. Employers may deliberately misclassify workers to avoid paying overtime or providing benefits.
The primary consideration in determining whether a worker is an independent contractor or employee is the degree of control an employer has over their work. Courts will consider factors such as whether the worker was required to work at a specific time and place and whether they were paid a salary and received training.
The Dublin unpaid wage and hour attorneys at Erlich Law Firm can determine whether you have been misclassified as an independent contractor. If so, we can help you recover the wages and penalties you are owed.
Withholding Sales Commissions
Dublin employers are required to put sales commission plans in writing. They must state the conditions for earning commission and the formula used to determine the amount. Workers who complete a sale and meet the specified requirements for earning commission must be paid the agreed-upon amount.
It is unlawful for an employer to renege on the commission plan later. If workers resign or are fired before the payout date, they may still be entitled to their sales commissions. When a salesperson is eligible for overtime pay, the commission is incorporated into their overtime rate.
Tipping violations typically occur in restaurants and other businesses in the service industry. Around 35 percent of tipped workers experienced wage theft in 2021. Tipped workers like cooks and waitstaff have the right to keep their tips unless the bill includes automatic gratuities not determined by the customer.
California law permits Dublin employers to pool tips and divide them between workers, provided that the arrangement is reasonable and specific rules are followed. However, management is not allowed to keep information for themselves. Additionally, tips should not be calculated as part of the worker’s minimum wage.
How an Unpaid Wage and Hour Attorney Can Help
Wage theft remains a persistent issue across all types of employment. The Wage and Hour Division of the U.S. Department of Labor found that each worker seeking to recover unpaid wages was owed an average of $1,211.70 in back wages in 2021.
Sometimes multiple employees working for the same employer experience similar wage and hour violations. In such situations, it may be helpful to file a class-action lawsuit. A class action allows workers to combine their claims, making it difficult for the employer to dismiss the case or retaliate against workers who speak up. Collective action can also urge the company to change its illegal practices.
California and federal labor laws shield workers from unlawful treatment on the job. However, it can be challenging to keep up with the latest changes and updates to rules that may affect you. A knowledgeable attorney can guide you on your legal options for recovering the wages you are owed based on the details of your situation.
If you suspect you are owed unpaid wages, Erlich Law Firm is here to help. Our Dublin unpaid wage and hour attorneys will do everything we can to resolve your wage dispute.
Erlich Law Firm has a track record of success in obtaining compensation for workers and protecting their rights. We have experience handling many wage theft cases, ranging from misclassified workers being denied overtime to groups of employees being forced to work off the clock.
When you hire our law firm, we will thoroughly investigate what happened and collect evidence to support your claim. Going up against an employer is difficult, but you do not have to do it alone. Erlich Law Firm is with you every step of the way.
Time Limit for Filing a Wage Claim
If you seek to recover your unpaid wages, it is essential to act fast. The statute of limitations under California law gives Dublin workers three years to file their wage claim. Reach out to an experienced Dublin unpaid wage and hour attorney for guidance on the legal process and to ensure you do not miss any critical deadlines.
Call for a Free Case Evaluation
The Dublin unpaid wage and hour attorneys at Erlich Law Firm are dedicated to fighting for the rights of workers who have suffered wage violations. When your employer is not paying you correctly, it is hard not to feel helpless. We encourage you to contact us for guidance on your legal options for resolving your wage dispute. Our lawyers are available to answer all your questions. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you.
FREE CASE REVIEW
When employees' legal rights are violated, we take time to explain their legal options, listen to their goals, and aggressively argue their case until we achieve the resolution they deserve.