Improper Wage Statements

Experienced Wage and Hour Violations Attorney Dedicated to Ensuring Employees Are Paid Fairly and for All the Time They Work

Wage statements are an important tool that employees can use to verify that they are being paid correctly. Employees are entitled to an accurate wage statement that contains certain information, such as their wages earned, hours worked, deductions, and hourly rates. If your employer failed to provide you with a proper and accurate wage statement, you can sue your employer for substantial damages and penalties under the California Labor Code.

At the Hardin Law Group, our Los Angeles and Orange County employment lawyer has extensive experience holding employers accountable for failing to provide workers with wage statements. We handle cases involving employers who issue no wage statements at all, as well as those who repetitively provide improper wage statements.

What Is a Wage Statement?

A wage statement, often referred to as a pay stub, is a document provided by an employer to an employee detailing their earnings for a specific pay period. It includes important information such as gross pay (the total amount earned before any deductions), net pay (the amount received after deductions), and details of deductions like taxes, Social Security contributions, and any other withholdings like health insurance or retirement plan contributions.

Wage statements also typically show the accumulation of earnings and deductions for the year-to-date, allowing employees to track their annual income and deductions. This document is crucial for employees as it provides a clear understanding of their earnings and deductions. It’s also important for record-keeping purposes, such as when applying for loans, filing taxes, or addressing any discrepancies in pay. Employers are often legally required to provide wage statements to ensure transparency in compensation.

What Information Must Be Included in a California Wage Statement?

In California, an employer is required to provide employees with regular written wage statements. Under California Labor Code section 226(a), these wage statements must include at least the following information:

  • Gross wages;
  • Net wages;
  • Total hours worked;
  • All deductions;
  • The dates of the pay period;
  • The name of the employee with either an employee identification number or the last four digits of their Social Security number;
  • The employer’s name and legal address;
  • Meal and rest break premiums; and
  • All applicable hourly rates (i.e., overtime pay) and the corresponding number of hours worked at each hourly rate.

Pursuing an Employment Lawsuit for Improper or Missing Wage Statements

If an employer fails to provide a wage statement or issues an inaccurate or non-compliant wage statement, the Private Attorneys General Act (“PAGA”) permits employees to bring a claim against their employer on behalf of themselves and similarly situated employees. If an employer fails to provide an accurate wage statement, an employee may recover $50 for the initial violation and $100 for each subsequent violation or their actual expenses, whichever is greater. However, an employee’s recovery cannot exceed $4,000, plus costs and reasonable attorneys’ fees.

Additionally, an employer could be subject to civil penalties of $250 per employee per violation for the first violation and up to $1,000 per employee for each subsequent violation. However, these penalties are not payable to the employee.

Notably, in Los Angeles and Orange County improper wage statement cases, an “incident” is defined as a single pay period, meaning an employer’s liability can quickly become significant, especially for those employers with many employees.

Speak with an Experienced Improper Wage Statements Attorney in Los Angeles or Orange County

If your wage statement is incorrect or lacks vital information, call Hardin Law Group today for a free and confidential consultation to learn your rights and explore your options. At the Hardin Law Group, our Los Angeles improper wage statements lawyer understands what it takes to show an employer’s non-compliance with the California Labor Code. We also offer free consultation to all prospective employees, during which we will answer your questions, explain your rights and discuss what we can do to help. To learn more, and to schedule a free consultation today, call our Los Angeles wage and hour violations attorney at 310-606-2122. You can also connect with our Orange County employment attorney by calling 949-337-4810.

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