Every employee deserves to have their rightful wages paid to them. There isn’t ever an instance in which employers should shortchange workers. For some employees, speaking out against wage and hour violations is scary.
Many people wonder how their employer will react when they file one of these complaints. The bottom line is that retaliation in response to a wage and hour complaint is illegal. Employees have specific protections in place for these situations.
What is retaliation?
Retaliation occurs when an employer or one of the representatives, such as a supervisor or manager, takes negative employment actions against an employee because the employee participated in a protected activity. Filing a factual wage and hour complaint is a protected activity.
There are various forms of retaliation. Some of the more common include:
- Lowering the worker’s hourly pay
- Reducing the employee’s hours
- Terminating the employee
- Giving the employee an unfavorable review that wasn’t deserved
- Moving the employee to a less favorable location or shift
- Making the working conditions unbearable
Employers can still take normal disciplinary measures as long as they’re in line with established company policies. For example, an employee who files a complaint can’t skip work just because they filed the complaint. They can still be written up and disciplined in accordance with company policies for failing to call off.
Anyone who isn’t being paid their rightful wages should launch a complaint against their employer. Making sure that you have everything in order and are taking steps to protect yourself is important. This is much easier when you have someone on your side who’s familiar with these matters.