Attorney Jean-Claude Lapuyade

The guidelines for filing a wage claim

If people do not receive all of their wages from their employers, they need to file a wage claim. 

According to the Department of Industrial Relations, a wage claim can help people recover the wages they have not received. Once people file a claim, officials look into the situation to understand what happened. 

When to file a wage claim

People usually need to file a wage claim within a certain amount of time. If they have a written contract, they should submit documentation within four years from the date they first notice the situation. If an employer is not providing sick leave or overtime, people should file within three years. Sometimes people and their employers may come to an oral agreement about wages. In this situation, people have two years to file a claim. If an employer refuses to let people access their payroll records, then people have one year to file a claim. If someone files a claim after the statute of limitations expires, the claim may no longer be valid. 

Which documents to include

The Department of Industrial Relations says that people need to provide documentation about their wages. This should include copies of paychecks and time records. Some people may have an employment notice that describes the pay rate, and they should submit this document as well. If an employer paid wages with a bounced check, people should include a copy of this check. 

People may need to fill out paperwork specific to their situation. If people have unpaid overtime, for example, they may need to complete a worksheet showing which hours they worked. Once people put all their documentation together, officials can see the full extent of the situation.