No matter what terms you leave on, your employer is required to give you your last paycheck in the correct amount. If that doesn’t happen, then there are some steps that you can take immediately so that you receive the compensation that you deserve.
Check Your State’s Laws
While there are some federal laws regarding paychecks and termination, states have their own rules as well. In addition to checking your state’s termination statutes, you might also want to take a look at all of the laws regarding late or missing paychecks. Spending a little bit of time researching all of those laws and statutes will make it much easier to file a legal claim if the issue isn’t resolved right away.
Contact Your State Labor Board
The next step in the process is contacting your state labor board directly so that you can speak with a representative and file a claim. Every state is different, but most require employees to file a claim within just a few days if they haven’t received a paycheck. It is also a good idea to contact the U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division (WHD) to file a complaint on a federal level. If a complaint is filed and your employer doesn’t pay immediately, then they could face very steep fines.
Collect Employment Information
Unfortunately, these types of situations can quickly spiral out of control, and that is just one of the many reasons why you should collect and organize all pertinent information. That includes any conversations you have had with your past employer, previous paychecks you have received, and your own account of the situation. With that information, it will be much easier for you and your legal representative to create a case if the situation becomes a legal battle.
Contact an Attorney
Navigating employment laws can be very difficult, and that is why it is generally a good idea to contact an attorney who has experience with workers compensation law. Your attorney will need to go over all of the information that you have collected before they contact your employer. Once the employer has been contacted by the attorney, they will need to respond in a very short amount of time if they want to avoid a civil suit.
You were most likely relying on your last paycheck to cover important expenses, and not receiving that money can be devastating. That is why you must take action right away if you don’t receive your last paycheck immediately after you are terminated.