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Wage theft is an unfortunate reality for many Louisiana workers

On Behalf of | Aug 30, 2022 | Employment Law

Employees in Louisiana rightfully expect to receive appropriate wages for the jobs that they perform. If your employer compensates you on an hourly basis, then you should receive pay for every minute that you work and overtime pay when you have to put in an unusually high number of hours one week.

Unfortunately, thousands of workers across Louisiana every year both endure misconduct from their employer that deprives them of their rightfully-earned wages. When you understand what constitutes wage theft, you will be in a better position to fight back against an employer who doesn’t pay you what they should.

How wage theft occurs

There are numerous ways that a company can unfairly deny you the compensation you should receive for the work you already performed. Two of the more common and harder-to-prove forms of wage theft include time-clock rounding and outright record manipulation.

Especially with digital time clock systems, it is surprisingly easy for someone in management or human resources to take a few minutes off of each of your shifts and keep you from getting overtime pay. Companies can theoretically round timeclock records to specific increments, but they should do so fairly. If they always round down, that is a violation of your rights.

They also have the right to make small changes to your timeclock record for accuracy but not to diminish what they pay you or prevent you from getting overtime. Other forms of wage theft include demanding that you work off the clock or refusing to pay someone for their last week of employment.

Wage theft is against the law

Your most basic right as a worker is the right to a fair wage. If your employer refuses to pay you, you can take legal action against the company. Louisiana allows workers with valid wage claims to pursue civil action against a company that has denied someone specific paychecks or frequently manipulated records to avoid paying someone in full.

Your own records, the company’s history and even supporting claims by co-workers treated the same way can all increase your chances of success when holding an employer accountable for wage theft. Recognizing wage theft and taking the right steps to fight it can protect employees not receiving what they should from their employers.