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3 ways employers steal from employees

On Behalf of | Jun 26, 2023 | EMPLOYMENT LAW (EMPLOYEE) - Wage & Hour Laws

Unfortunately, some employers steal from their employees. Research shows that employers steal almost $400 million in wages every year from workers in Chicagoland. This is alarmingly high. But how does this happen?

Below are three ways employers steal from employees:

1. Paying below the minimum wage

The minimum wage in Illinois is $13.00 per hour for workers 18 years old and above, and those who are below 18 years can be paid $.50 per hour less than the adult minimum wage. Therefore, if your employer pays you below these rates, you may be experiencing wage theft.

2. Not paying overtime

An employee should be paid overtime at a rate of one and a half times their usual rate for any hours they work above 40 hours in a week. Simply telling you to take time off in lieu without paying you the extra is not acceptable.

Other tricks include requiring employees to work off the clock or during breaks.

3. Misclassifying employees

Some employers intentionally misclassify employees as independent contractors to save money. Employees are typically entitled to certain benefits, including health insurance, sick leave, paid time off, pension and severance pay which independent contractors are not entitled to. Hence a boss may put someone through the books as an independent contractor when they really should be classifying them as an employee.

It’s not always obvious which category a person fits into, but there are legal guidelines that employers must follow to make the correct choice. If you believe they have got it wrong, or have cheated you out of wages in any other way, you’ll want to learn more about your options.