I Haven't Been Paid as a Truck Driver

Truck drivers, like many other workers in the country, work long hours and in often stressful conditions, so they expect to be paid the amount agreed between them and their employers.

However, this doesn’t always happen and truck drivers every year lose millions of dollars due to wage theft committed by their employers. If you are a truck driver and you haven’t been paid, you may be able to file a wage theft claim to get the lost wages paid to you.

Payday Requirements for Truck Drivers

Most states have laws which state how often truck drivers should be paid. For example, in Wisconsin, most employers are expected to pay truck drivers all wages earned at least every month, with a period no more than 31 days in between the pay periods.

North Carolina doesn’t have a designated pay period for truck drivers but it could be daily, weekly, bi-weekly, semi-monthly or monthly.

In Maine, truck drivers must be paid regularly and intervals between payment days must not exceed 16 days. If while working as a truck driver the time between pay days exceeds your state’s laws then may have be able to file a claim.

Fill out a Free Case Evaluation if you were not paid after quitting

Examples of Wage Theft That Trucking Companies Could Engage In

Trucking companies are required by law to pay their employees based on the terms of their contracts and to follow the state and federal wage laws. Unfortunately some trucking companies could engage in the following examples of wage theft

  • Unpaid Work Hours: Not paying a driver for all the hours that they worked, that includes driving, loading, loading and waiting time. 
  • Employee Misclassification: Trucking companies could misclassify their full time employees as independent contractors that way they do not have to pay minimum wage, overtime and other tax benefits.
  • Paycheck Withholding: That is withholding or delaying employee’s paychecks for no reason. 
  • Unauthorized Deductions: Deducting unauthorized fees from driver’s paychecks such as fuel costs, maintenance, etc.

What Are the Labor Laws That Protect Truck Drivers?

Drivers represent the heart of any trucking company. Unfortunately, many trucking companies take advantage of their drivers by violating federal employee protection laws such as the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). As a truck driver, you should learn about the labor laws that protect truck drivers.

Considered non-exempt workers, truck drivers qualify to receive the federal minimum age of $7.25 per hour. However, many states have increased the minimum wage well beyond what federal law mandates.

If you work more than 40 hours a week, you are entitled to receive pay that is one and a half times what your typical pay is when you work fewer than 40 hours per week. 

Once again, many states have strengthened federal labor law by requiring employers to pay overtime to employees that work more than eight hours during a 24-hour period.

Truck drivers that sustain injuries while on the job should be eligible to receive financial assistance from their state workers’ compensation program. 

Employers purchase workers’ compensation insurance to take care of medical bills that are associated with workplace accidents. Truck drivers also must follow numerous safety regulations. 

If your employer has violated one or more of the safety regulations, you should contact a representative from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) to seek support.

Truck drivers that must deal with a company that has violated a contract should contact an employment attorney to receive legal support. Since many truckers fight for the same legal rights, filing a class action lawsuit might be the most effective way to make their employers comply with state and federal employment laws. 

How to Sue a Trucking Company For Not Paying You

If your employer does not respond to your wage theft request, you should file a complaint with the Department of Labor (DOL). 

The DOL governs federal labor laws to guarantee workers' rights to fair, safe, and healthy working conditions, including wage laws. 

After you file a complaint with the DOL, they could investigate your complaint, send a warning to your employer, or penalize your employer that could require your employer to pay unpaid wages. 

When you file a complaint with the Department of Labor it will be dual filed with your state’s agency that governs labor and vice versa, meaning you won’t have to file the same claim twice. 

You should consider working with an employment lawyer to sue a trucking company for not paying you, your lawyer can help you file your DOL complaint.

Because you are covered by the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) which guarantees you are paid for the work you have done, you are eligible to file a claim with your state’s Department of labor which is responsible for enforcing Wages and Hours Laws.

However, before you fill a wage theft claim form you should contact your employer to see if you can resolve your wage theft issue without filing a complaint.

Contact the Department of Labor

If your employer fails to respond to your wage theft request, you should file a complaint with your state’s Department of Labor.

This is typically achieved by completing a wage theft claim form which you can usually find online at your state’s Department of Labor website.

When you complete this form you should provide evidence to support your wage theft claim such as:

  • your record of hours worked;
  • any pay check stubs;
  • contact details of eye witnesses prepared to testify for you about your wage theft;
  • your supervisor and employer’s contact details.

As soon as the form is received normally your state’s Department of Labor will assign an investigator to your case who first of all will determine if you have a valid wage theft claim.

He or she may contact your employer to see if a resolution can be reached. If no response is received mediation between you and your employer might be suggested to try and reach an amicable solution.

If this fails you may be able to file a lawsuit in court to get your wage theft repaid. If you win and depending on your state you might get more in compensation than your wage theft and you should have your attorney’s fee paid as well.

Complete A Free Case Evaluation

As soon as your state’s Department of Labor has given you the go ahead to file a wage theft claim in court, you may need help from an employment lawyer to work on your behalf to get your wage theft claim paid. 

Lawyers know what you are up against and will check to see if your evidence is sufficient to win a successful wage theft claim. Your lawyer’s fees will be paid once a settlement has been reached.

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