If you know that your employer owes you money, do you have any legal recourse? Federal laws like the Fair Labor Standards Act are designed to protect employees and give them options when such issues arise. So yes, you can sue your employer for any unpaid wages. An Atlanta wage & hour law attorney from our firm can help you.
Where Can I Report Unpaid Wages?
Georgia does not have a state agency to report unpaid wages to, so you have two options. You can file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division. This division will investigate and settle the claim with an employer and make sure that any unpaid wages are paid.
You can also decide to file a lawsuit. This is generally the last action you take when other actions have failed, but you can also sue right away in an attempt to get your wages paid.
Can I Sue for Bonuses or Commissions?
Maybe you received your regular pay, but your agreed-upon bonuses or commissions were never paid out. Now this can be a bit more difficult to deal with because bonuses and commissions are not actually covered under the FLSA. That means that the Department of Labor will not investigate such claims for you. So you need to do a few things:
- Be sure that you had a clear agreement about this additional pay with your employer
- Write a letter to your employer about the additional wages you are owed
- If there is no response, you can seek these unpaid wages in court
There may have just been a simple miscommunication or error, so we recommend talking to your employer first. If they still will not pay out those bonus wages after a polite discussion, you need to hold them accountable.
Do I Have a Limited Time to Pursue Unpaid Wages?
You do not have an unlimited amount of time to file a suit or complaint over unpaid wages. You must do it within two years from the date that your employer first violated the FLSA, or two years from the date that you noticed the violation.
What Are Liquidated Damages?
Liquidated damages are designed to compensate you for the other costs that you incurred as your employer kept your wages from you. This can include fees you had to pay for late charges or bounced checks because you should have had money, but did not. These damages can equal your unpaid wages. So if it is determined that your employer withheld $1,000 in wages, they could also be forced to pay you $1,000 in liquidated damages as well. So you would get $2,000 in total.
Set Up a Consultation With Our Lawyers
If you need help getting your unpaid wages, Ben Barrett Law is ready to assist you. Schedule a consultation and learn more about how an employment lawyer can help you navigate the legal process and fight for what you are owed.