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Are you a victim of wage theft?

On Behalf of | Mar 14, 2024 | Wage & Hour Laws

As an employee, you probably know California boasts strong worker protections, yet wage theft remains a reality for many. Even after addressing the issue with their employer, some people may find the unlawful practice continues.

Employer wage theft can certainly impact anyone, but low-wage earners usually face the lion’s share of risk. Some employers exploit these workers’ fear of job loss or lack of awareness about their rights. Unfortunately, those who do not earn lucrative incomes have the most to lose from wage theft.

Learn how to recognize wage theft

Employers determined to get more than their share often look beyond paychecks for ways to line their pockets. Since California law guarantees workers proper pay for all authorized work hours, your boss cannot make illegal deductions or withhold earned wages as punishment.

Specific examples of employer wage theft include the following:

  • Keeping employee tips
  • Allowing paychecks to bounce
  • Failing to reimburse legitimate work expenses
  • Paying less than the state minimum wage
  • Failing to pay overtime wages for qualifying hours

Employers who do not allow workers their mandatory meal or rest breaks may also be committing wage theft.

Learn how to protect yourself

Many workers harmed by employer wage theft fear retaliation, so they choose not to act. If you believe your boss is unlawfully taking your pay, do not let fear stop you from seeking recourse. Instead, take these proactive steps.

  • Monitor: Regularly check your paystubs for accuracy.
  • Report: Report any errors directly to your employer, documenting each instance.
  • Document: Maintain a record of each incident of theft and your attempts to resolve the problem.

If the theft continues, get legal guidance. This can help you build a case strong enough to ensure your boss will never steal from you or any other employee again.