My office gets contacted by employees who receive letters from the Department of Labor saying that they are owed back wages. These back wages are usually underpaid minimum wages or unpaid overtime pay. While I respect the Department of Labor and those in the local offices with whom I have spoken on matters, especially for the overall good done for workers, the Department of Labor has the ability to recover back wages, but not penalties, attorneys’ fees and costs. My office, however, can recover back wages, penalties, attorneys’ fees, and costs.
Just the other day, I got a call from someone who used to work for Willow – which became Arise – a company that did reservations for Disney World. Unfortunately, the former employee was notified too late to do anything. Employees usually have two, sometimes three years, to bring a claim for unpaid overtime. Waiting too long can result in employees giving up the right to make a claim.
If you received a letter from the Department of Labor about your entitlement to unpaid wages, then don’t settle for less. You do not have to accept the amount offered to you; you can decide to sue the employer – and possible recover more money on your own.