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What to do if you're a victim of wage theft

Posted at 5:10 AM, Mar 05, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-05 06:10:36-05

Unpaid wages is an issue employee’s hope they never face.

If your employer stops paying you, there are time sensitive steps that are important to take in order to be compensated.

Once you learn that you will not receive a paycheck on your usual payday, it is important to keep a record of your hours worked during the relevant pay period, and any additional expenses that you suffer due to receiving your paycheck late, according to workplacefairness.org.

Next, you should file a wage claim with the Texas Workforce Commission. That form can be found here.

It is important to submit the wage claim with the TWC within 180 days of the date the claimed wages originally became due for payment.

The TWC will investigate wage claims under the Pay Day Law, Chapter 61 of the Texas Labor Code.

Texas Payday Law covers all Texas business entities, regardless of size, except for public employers such as the federal government, the state or a political subdivision of the state. All persons who perform a service for compensation are considered employees, except for close relatives and independent contractors.

The kinds of payments subject to the Texas Payday Law include:

  • Compensation for services rendered regardless of how they are computed
  • Commissions and bonuses according to the agreement between the parties
  • Certain fringe benefits due under a written agreement with or policy of the employer

The other option unpaid employee's have is to file a lawsuit in Texas courts by asserting the employed breached its contract to pay you for services.

However, some experts say this process is a longer and more costly process.

If you cannot afford an attorney, there are nonprofit legal service organizations that may help, according to TexasLawHelp.org:

More information on the Texas Payday Law and how the TWC will help can be found here.