What should I do if my employer won't pay me?


Quick Answer

Individuals are encouraged to keep track of all hours worked during the pay period in which their employers refuse to pay, according to Workplace Fairness. They should also keep track of additional expenses accrued, such as late fees, due to nonpayment. Furthermore, a formal complaint should be filed with the appropriate state agency.

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Full Answer

It is illegal for an employer to refuse to pay employees for work they have completed. Employers who fail to abide by labor laws are subject to monetary fines or criminal charges imposed by local and state agencies.

After all information has been gathered to support an individual's case, she can contact the state government agency responsible for labor standards violations, consult with the U.S. Department of Labor or an attorney to determine the next steps. The employee should be sure she has documentation that states the employer's reasons for not paying her, according to Nolo. Any relevant emails or other correspondences create a paper trail that can help the case against the employer as well.

It is mandatory for employers to pay employees at least minimum wage. Individuals who failed to receive payment from their employer, and who weren't being paid minimum wage, may contact the Wage-Hour division of the U.S. Department of Labor, Workplace Fairness notes.

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