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Unpaid Wages? – Major Changes to “Wage Theft” Law

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Do you think you are owed unpaid wages or didn’t get paid for working overtime? If you think you might be the victim of wage theft, it’s important to contact an attorney right away so they can help you understand your legal options. Call or text are wage theft attorney team at 908-352-2323.

New Jersey already had some of the most comprehensive wage theft laws in the country. These laws are designed to protect employees from unscrupulous employers. Recent significant changes to these laws have increased protections for employees and made the penalties even harsher for employers.

What is Wage Theft?

Employers must pay their employees for all hours worked, as well as for any overtime or bonuses earned. In addition, employers are prohibited from making deductions from an employee’s wages without their permission, or from paying less than the minimum wage.

Employers make frequent errors, whether deliberate or not, in calculating overtime payment including:

  • Averaging hours over a two-week period.
  • Not including all payments in calculating the overtime rate of pay.
  • Not paying overtime for all hours worked over forty per week.
  • Not including time spent preparing for work (donning and doffing).
  • Requiring employees to work through unpaid meal breaks.


Employees have the right to dispute any deductions or unpaid wages they receive by filing a complaint with their state’s labor department. The Department will investigate the complaint. If they find evidence of wage theft, they may bring criminal charges against the employer.

Additionally, employees have the right to file a civil lawsuit against their employer if they believe that they have been wrongfully denied payment. This action can be taken regardless of whether or not criminal charges were filed in connection with the case.

Unpaid Wages – Types of Evidence

In order to successfully pursue either criminal or civil legal action against an employer for wage theft, employees need to provide sufficient evidence that proves that their wages were stolen. This includes:

  • timesheets or records showing when and how much work was done by an employee.
  • bank statements that reflect unauthorized deductions.
  • emails or other communication between an employee and employer related to payment.

An attorney can help employees compile this evidence and can also represent them in court proceedings if needed.

What If My Unpaid Wages Case is Successful?

In New Jersey, if an employee is successful in a wage theft or wage and hour lawsuit, they may be rewarded with back pay, including overtime wages and regular wages. This can come in the form of unpaid wages they were unlawfully denied or withheld. In addition, it can include damages for emotional distress related to the situation.

Employees are eligible to receive triple damages for unpaid wages (i.e., the unpaid wages, plus liquidated damages of 200%). The most recent law also adds protections against retaliation, increases potential fines, provides for jail time for repeat offenders, and allows for recovery of attorneys’ fees and costs.

Unpaid Wages – Summary

The bottom line is no one should ever have to worry about being paid fairly for hard work done on behalf of an employer – but unfortunately, too many people do fall victim to wage theft each year in New Jersey. Knowing your rights under NJ’s comprehensive wage theft laws is critical.

Fortunately, you don’t have to go it alone if you believe you are a victim of wage theft in NJ. Seeking help from an experienced and knowledgeable attorney can make the process much simpler. A top New Jersey law firm will protect your rights throughout the proceedings.

Attorneys understand the complex laws surrounding wage theft. With legal representation, employees can move forward with their cases and get rewarded fairly.

If you believe you are owed money by your employer due to unpaid wages or unauthorized deductions made from your paycheck, contact an experienced attorney who specializes in wage and hour violations. The lawyer will look at your specific situation to determine what, if anything, counts as wage theft. The wage theft attorney will then explain the legal remedies available if you have been a victim, and how an experienced lawyer can assist you in getting justice.

New Jersey’s Top Wage And Hour Violations, Personal Injury and Workers’ Compensation Law Firm

injured at work? Did you suffer a back injury while working? We understand the latest laws when it comes to worker’s compensation. Call us today for a free consultation.

Are there unpaid wages your employer owes you? Call our wage and hour violations law firm today?

Did you suffer injuries in a car accident while you were working? Call us today at 908-352-2323. Do you prefer contacting our injury lawyers via email, then  please click here.

Truck driver injured while working? Call us today at 908-352-2323.

If you prefer contacting our workers’ compensation injury lawyers via email, please click here. You can also text our workers’ comp team at 908-352-2323.

Unpaid wages or failure to receive overtime? Call us right now at 908-352-2323.

Our work injury lawyers serve clients throughout the entire state of New Jersey. This includes the cities of Newark, Elizabeth, Union, Short Hills, Millburn, Livingston , Camden, Trenton, New Brunswick and Jersey City. We cover Camden, Middlesex, Morris, Bergen, Essex, Hudson, Union, and Somerset counties. Our accident lawyers have offices in Elizabeth, Short Hills, throughout New Jersey and in New York City.

We represent clients suffering with spinal cord injury, back injury, burn injury, broken bones and traumatic brain injury. 

If you are enduring physical pain and suffering, mental pain and suffering, permanent disability, disfigurement, lost wages, medical expenses or any other hardship resulting from a truck accident, car accident or pedestrian accident please contact us today for a free consultation.

You can view some of our results here and check out reviews from our clients here.


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