How to Remedy Wage Theft

In light of recent wage theft allegations made against various high profile companies (cough, cough, McDonalds) an Assembly Bill introduced by Assemblyman Mark Stone from Scotts Valley, seeks to remedy the lengthy, often arduous process to reclaim wages.

Throughout a three year period, the UCLA Labor Center reported 17% of employees who filed wage claims did not receive the settlement due because the business in questions shut down before the settlements were reached.

AB 2416 would give the employees the ability to place a lien, or collateral on the employer. The lien placed at the start of a case would allow the aggrieved employee to collect the settlement even if the business shuts down. On the other hand, in the interest of equal protection, the bill also includes protections for business. A clause in the bill will allow a judge to evaluate and assess attorney’s fees and court costs if “false information was knowingly” used in bath faith. An employer can also be absolved from the lien if the employee files a claim and then disappears.

While pro-business groups oppose the measure, the bill may help employees who find themselves at a loss when less than credible business owners file for bankruptcy or sell the business to avoid wage claims.

Source: LA Times