UNPAID WAGES AND BENEFITS
Even though Washington State employment is "at-will," they cannot break certain promises, pay you less than minimum wage, or refuse to pay you overtime if you are an hourly employee. We suggest you complete our Online Employment Law Questionnaire at the bottom of this page or call us at (206) 447-1560 if you believe you have a claim of breach of contract or unpaid wages / benefits.
The following are items that may be recoverable:
COMMISSION AND BONUSES
WAGE OR SALARY
SOCIAL SECURITY CONTRIBUTIONS
PAID TIME OFF
If your employment contract states that you will be employed for a certain amount of time or get paid a certain amount, and you are fired or not being paid the stated amount, you may have a breach of contract claim. If your employer promised to pay you a certain bonus each quarter that they are not paying you, you may have a breach of contract claim. For such claims, we need proof that the promise was made; proof that the promise was not kept; and proof that you met the terms of the agreement.
Take the following example: Jasmine was given an employment contract with a stated duration of three years. The contract stated that if she made 3 sales during the year, she would receive a $10,000 bonus. Jasmine made 6 sales during the year, but her boss did not pay her the $10,000 bonus. Her boss fired her after only 2 years of work.
Jasmine may have a claim. We would collect from Jasmine her signed employment contract, her termination letter, her pay stubs and W2 showing she was not paid the $10,000 bonus, an email from her boss refusing to pay the $10,000 bonus, and the confirmation of each of the six sales she made during the year.
If you are a being paid less than minimum wage, not being paid for all the hours you work, are an hourly worker not being paid overtime, or a salaried worker who should be classified as an hourly worker not receiving overtime pay, you may have an unpaid wage claim. For such claims, we need proof of the amount you are paid, proof of the number of hours you worked, and proof of your job duties in some cases.
Take the following example: Rachelle works as a carpenter. She works on average 55 hours per week, but her employer classifies her as a salaried employee and does not pay her for the 15 hours of overtime work she performs.
Rachelle may have a claim. We would collect from Rachelle her job description, witness statements from her colleagues about the tasks that Rachelle performs, her time card record showing how many hours she worked, and her pay stubs showing how much she was actually paid.
Here's another example: Joaquin works in door to door sales and is scheduled to work 6 hours per day. His boss tells him daily to stick around after work ends for another hour or so to do some things around the office. Joaquin averages 8 hours of work per day. Asking Joaquin to keep working is not unlawful. However, over the next five months, Joaquin realizes on his pay stub that he is only being paid for 6 hours of work per day rather than the 8 hours of work that he does per day.
Joaquin may have a claim. We would collect from Joaquin his time card record showing the 8 hours of work that he completes daily, and his pay stubs showing how much he is paid.