Missing Wages in Philadelphia Employment Lawsuits
Workers may be fired for asking for illegally withheld hourly wages, overtime wages or tips. In other situations, workers may be retaliated against, i.e., hours reduced, job duties reassigned, etc. Our lawyers are seeing an uptick in these types of cases since the Covid pandemic.
Under federal and state wage laws, any time spent performing duties for the employer or participating in employer-mandated pre-work security or health checks must be compensated.
A day care in Philadelphia mandates pre-shift health screenings for all employees. This includes a rapid Covid test. Employees are required to report to work 30 minutes before their shifts to take the tests. Despite telling the employees that they would be paid for the additional time, the employer fails to compensate the employees. A worker is fired after requesting the missing pay on behalf of all workers.
Hourly workers in Pennsylvania are entitled to at least minimum wage and overtime pay at time and a half for all hours worked over 40 hours per week. Overtime rules may apply to some salaried workers, on a case by case basis.
A retail worker who earns an hourly wage is asked to take several shifts at another location, which earns the worker multiple overtime hours. The overtime pay is missing from the worker’s subsequent paychecks. When the worker asks his manager for the overtime pay, he is told that he should be grateful the retail store is even open. Several days later, he is fired and never receives the missing overtime wages.
Tips & Tip Pools
Employers cannot keep tips under any circumstances, and managers or supervisors may not keep tips and may not participate in tip pools. However, a manager may be able to earn tips if they perform actual duties, like covering a shift for an absent server or busser, but only as to that shift.
Example – Manager Takes a Cut of Tip Pool
A restaurant employee in Philadelphia has her hours significantly reduced after she files a complaint about a manager who takes a cut of the tip pool for wait staff, bussers and kitchen staff.
Example – Employer Keeps Tips for Hourly Workers
Workers at a deli outside Philadelphia are paid hourly, at minimum wage. However, the employer keeps all tips, telling the workers that since they earn minimum wage, the employer isn’t required to include the tips in the wages. One of the workers challenges the employer, asks for the missing tips and is then fired.
Wrongful Termination News: Retailer pays $50,000 in punitive damages plus wages owed after firing worker who requested missing overtime wages. Feb. 2022, DOL News Release
About Koller Law Employment Lawyers
For decades, we’ve been handling employment law cases, including wrongful termination and retaliation, for workers across Pennsylvania and New Jersey, Koller Law is not run like every other firm – we provide the compassionate, individual attention employees need and deserve.
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Page updated: October 25, 2022