Every working person deserves to be paid fairly and fully for their labor. Unfortunately, despite the laws in place to protect workers, that does not always happen.
Wage theft is common and millions of American suffer from wage theft every year. You should regularly check your paystub and compare it to your time worked to ensure that you are paid for all your earnings.
If you notice a discrepancy, you should file a complaint with your employer and ask them to compensate you for what you are owed. If the issue is not resolved, you will need to report wage theft in South Carolina by pursuing a formal complaint.
What Do You Need to Know Before You File a Wage Theft Claim In South Carolina?
The South Carolina Payment of Wages Act applies to all employees except employers of domestic labor in private homes and employers who have fewer than 5 employees consistently during the last 12 months. According to the law, wages include all forms of compensation for the time you have worked, including pay for a fixed amount of time, pay for completing a task, piece work, or any commission. If you are not paid for all these things and if you do not receive your pay in a timely manner, you have grounds to pursue a South Carolina wage theft claim.
While is only normal to trust your employee, you should always maintain evidence and documentation in case you face a situation in which you must pursue a claim because of wage theft or because of other actions, such as discrimination or harassment. It is your responsibility as the employee to maintain thorough records so you can prove which wages you were not paid and so you can prove how much you are owed by your employer.
You have a limited time to pursue a wage theft claim, and if you wait until the deadline has passed, you are not able to recoup compensation for your losses. You should keep your employee handbook, any employment contract or work agreement, proof of time worked such as copies of timecards, document who worked with you because witnesses can be beneficial, note any breaks that you take during your shift, and if applicable, keep track of your sales.
You should speak with a supervisor or with human resources as soon as you notice a discrepancy in your paycheck. You will want to make sure that the problem is addressed promptly, and that you have started your claim in a timely manner.
How To Report Wage Theft
If you have suffered wage theft in South Carolina, you will need to contact the South Carolina Department of Labor (SCDOL) or the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). You will need to provide them with explicit details that thoroughly explain what happened, when it happened, and how much you are owed.
You should provide copies of all your evidence but keep the original documents yourself for future reference. Your evidence file should include any memos, text messages, emails, witness statements, timecards, paystubs, employment contracts, employee handbooks, and detailed documents that itemize how much you are owed.
The more evidence you can provide to support your claim, the stronger your claim will be and the more likely you will be to recoup compensation for your damages. You should also work to prove a pattern. Most likely, you are not the only victim and either past or current employees have suffered from the same treatment.
When you can prove a pattern of such behavior, you are more likely to have a successful claim and recover your lost wages and damages. If the SCDOL or EEOC cannot resolve the matter, they will suggest you advance your claim to the next level, which is to pursue a lawsuit against your employer.
Fill Out a Free Evaluation Form
If you have suffered wage theft in South Carolina, you should enlist the help and guidance of an employment law attorney who handles wage theft claims. An attorney will be familiar with the local, state, and federal laws that apply to your situation.
Some wage theft lawyers work on a contingency basis and do not get paid until you win your claim but there are others who do require a retainer to be paid upfront. Discuss payment options with the attorney during your consultation.
Wage theft claims should be pursued right away, so fill out a Free Case Evaluation form and share the details of your claim right away. Then you can get your wage theft claim underway in South Carolina.