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How to file a claim for unpaid wages in California

On Behalf of | Jun 24, 2019 | Uncategorized |

The state of California has some of the most employee-friendly laws in the country. If an employer failed to pay you adequate wages according to state laws or an employment contract, you may have grounds to file a wage claim in Woodland Hills.

Every employer in California has the legal duty to pay an appropriate amount to its employees. This includes overtime pay. If an employer fails to meet the state’s wage and hour requirements, it could be liable to you for back pay plus penalties.

Gather relevant documentation

You will need to document your missed wages or overtime pay before initiating your claim. Download or print copies of your employment contract, employee handbook, paystubs, emails from an employer and other supporting documents. The more evidence you have of the employer owing you money, the better.

File your wage claim

Once you have prepared all relevant documentation, file your official wage claim with the California Department of Industrial Relations. You can file your claim online, via mail or in person. Keep the following statutes of limitations in mind:

  • Penalties involving a bounced check: one year
  • Oral agreements to pay more than minimum wage: two years
  • Wage, overtime or sick leave violations: three years
  • Written employment contracts: four years

Download or print and fill out the Initial Report or Claim. Then, deliver it to nearest Labor Commissioner’s office in person, through the mail or via email. Make sure all information is complete and accurate to avoid any claim delays.

Get professional assistance

California’s wage and hour laws are complex and can be difficult to navigate for the average employee. If you do not feel comfortable filling out the paperwork or handling your claim on your own, an employment law firm could assist. Seeking professional advice can help you fully understand your rights as an employee as well as recover maximum back pay and penalties from a negligent or criminal employer.