How To Win A Wage Claim In California

Updated: Mar 28

Learn how to put together a strong wage claim to increase your chances of winning. A California Employment Law Attorney can make all the difference.


If your company refuses to pay you the salaries or benefits you are owed, you have the right to file a wage lawsuit as an employee in California. The method of receiving these unpaid salaries or benefits begins with a salary claim. California's labor rules protect all employees regardless of their immigration status. You should immediately request a FREE case analysis by contacting a California Bar Certified Lawyer Referral Service.


How To Win A Wage Claim In California

File Your Unpaid Salary Claim


The Labor Commissioner's Office reviews the dispute to decide whether any salaries or benefits are due when a salary dispute is submitted. A settlement session between the employee and the employer is arranged to address the conflicts in most situations. A trial is held if the problems are not settled at the meeting so that a hearing officer can review the facts and decide on the allegations. Your Los Angeles Employment Lawyer will guide you through the process.


There is no authority for the Labor Commissioner's Office over independent contractors. Simple labor rights are not granted to those workers who are misclassified as independent contractors. File a salary lawsuit if you think your employer is misclassifying you as an independent contractor. A hearing can be held by the Labor Commissioner's Office to decide whether a worker has been misclassified as an independent contractor.


If you believe you have been misclassified, you must consult with a California Employment Attorney ASAP, you can request a case review here 24 hours a day and get an answer within 15 minutes. An Employment Attorney in Los Angeles (and across California) will know their way around the law and can help, support, and represent you.


Statute Of Limitations For Unpaid Wages in California


  • Penalties for a bounced check are due within one year or failure to provide access to or copy payroll or personnel documents.

  • For an oral commitment, penalties are due within two years to pay more than the minimum wage.

  • For minimum wage breaches, overtime, unpaid rest and meal breaks, sick days, unauthorized pay deductions, or due reimbursements within three years,

  • For a written contract, penalties are due within four years.


Collect All The Facts For Your Unpaid Wages In California


A. Your Employer's Details


To assist you with your petition, the Labor Commissioner's Office will need the address and name of the organization or person you work for. The company name should be listed on pay-stubs, mailing labels, documentation, or you might write down their vehicle license plate number for the individual who pays you if you can't find any contact information. You will need to write down each of their names and vehicle license plate numbers if you have more than one person paying you.


B. All Parties Liable


In addition to the employer, any person acting as a supervisor or manager who violates employees' labor rights may sometimes be held liable.


C. Track all worked hours.


When you take meal and rest breaks, write down the time you start and finish working every day, and the total hours you do.


You can always earn at least the minimum wage for every hour worked, whether you pay by contract or partial rate. Keep track of the working hours you spend on each contract to equate your overall compensation with the work you have completed, ensure that you have been paid for the work you have done and that your salary before deductions is at least the minimum hourly wage.


D. Holding on to all your pay stubs


Your supervisor must provide you with a pay-stub (piece-rate pay stub) or comprehensive wage declaration-time you are paid. The following details must be included in this itemized salary statement: your name, wages earned, pay period times, the name, address, and telephone number of your employer, and all deductions (taxes, etc.) and hours of paid sick leave received.