Howard County Wage Theft Lawyer
If an employer withholds your paycheck or wages unlawfully or otherwise does not pay the entirety of wages you earned, you could be experiencing a case of wage theft. While state and federal laws exist to prevent abusive employment practices like wage theft, employers may ignore or refuse to comply with these laws. These practices could have a monumental damaging effect on you as an employee.
If you believe that you have experienced wage theft, consider contacting the Spiggle Law Firm and seeing what a Howard County wage theft lawyer could do for you. Our team of steadfast employment attorneys may be able to provide additional insight into how you could recover from a wage theft situation.
Overview of Wage Theft
Many employees may encounter wage theft without initially realizing it. The actions are often more subtle than outright refusal to dispense pay, and it can occur in any employment situation.
The vast majority of cases involve employer violations of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) or Maryland wage and overtime laws. More specifically, wage theft could occur when:
- An employee is paid less than the legally established minimum wage
- An employer fails to pay earned overtime
- An employer withholds paychecks
- An employer takes unapproved deductions
- An employer refuses to compensate an employee for “off the clock” work or otherwise does not compensate an employee in a way that reflects the work done
An employer’s failure to adhere to the legal guidelines of the FLSA in a variety of situations could amount to wage theft. A meticulous wage theft lawyer in Howard County could help an employee dissect previous paystubs to determine if they may be a victim of wage theft.
Misclassification of Employees and Wage Theft
Wage theft often occurs when employees are accidentally or intentionally misclassified as “exempt” from wage and hour laws. Exempt employees are typically not covered under laws like the FLSA and therefore are not always provided access to minimum wages or overtime. A few typical exempt employees include live-in domestic employees, taxicab drivers, firefighters working in public fire departments, and anyone working for a company with less than five employees.
However, non-exempt employees are guaranteed protections under wage and hours laws. For instance, these individuals cost more to employ because they are eligible to receive minimum wage and overtime.
Misclassifications of employees may happen because employers are intentionally avoiding compliance, or because of a general misunderstanding. In either instance, any incorrect payment of wages could amount to grounds for a legal claim that a Howard County wage theft attorney could help you further explore.
Legal Remedies for Wage Theft Victims
Victims of wage theft who file a successful claim could be awarded back wages, or the repayment of the wages taken from them. In addition, employers who knowingly violated wage law may subject to criminal fines.
Often, employees may suspect wage theft but are afraid to file a claim. However, retaliation from an employer is illegal. If you experience negative actions in your workplace during or after filing a case, you should speak with a Howard County wage theft lawyer from the Spiggle Law Firm about additional damages to which they may be entitled.
Talking to a Howard County Wage Theft Attorney
You are entitled to money you have rightfully earned. It is illegal for an employer to refuse to pay the hours you worked or to use employment classification to lower your wages.
The Spiggle Law Firm has experience reviewing paystubs and filing potential wage theft claims. If you feel like your wages consistently do not reflect hours worked, or that you were cheated of overtime pay, use our free online case review tool to see what a Howard County wage theft lawyer may be able to help you accomplish. Your attorney may be able to review any documentation you provide and help you decide what is the best course of action.