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This is an employment law question for an attorney in CA: I…

This is an employment law...
This is an employment law question for an attorney in CA: I have been working as a dental associate for offices in the past several yrs. recently, i worked for 6 weeks for this really shady guy. he let me go citing not enough business (which was true) but then said he did not feel like paying me (owes me over $5000) because he did not like my quality of work!!! this was 2 weeks ago. I have since texted him asked for payment and also sent him a signature-on-delivery letter which he received on Tuesday. I told him that if I did not receive my full payment by end of thursday i would file a claim with labor commissioners office. Which i am in the process of doing: my question is: if he pays me a portion of it and not all, am I better off returning the check and asking for full payment or accepting it? I want to maximize results of my efforts
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Answered in 5 minutes by:
3/23/2018
Legal Eagle
Legal Eagle, Lawyer
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 10,300
Experience: Licensed to practice before state and federal court
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Hello! I am a licensed attorney, admitted to practice in state and federal court. I have a nearly 100% satisfaction rating (click here for more info) so all that means is that you can count on me to help today. Because I want to provide you with the most accurate answer possible, do you mind if I take a moment to review your question?

Please keep in mind that our conversation does not include an attorney-client relationship and this is for general information purposes only.

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Thanks so much for your patience. I'm sorry to hear about your situation. As you know the Fair Labor Standards Act and California law require that employees be paid for all hours worked at a minimum wage or at the wage agreed upon with their employer. If an employer fails to pay the employee their wages after their termination, then the department of fair housing and labor can intervene to collect the money.

In your case, if he doesn't return to you all of the money, then you are welcome to cash the check and contact the department of fair housing and labor to make a complaint for the rest of the money. Unlike a typical contract situation, employees won't be cut off from their recovery as a result of cashing a check for less than what they're owed. The reason is because employees still have rent, mortgages, and other bills they must pay such that rejecting the check is usually not probable or possible. Accordingly, you can accept the check and then continue on with pursuing your claim.

What other questions did you have for me today that I can help you out with:-)?

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Customer reply replied 1 month ago
Thank you for your response but I had specifically requested a CA attorney. The dept that deals with my type of issues here, is Labor Commissioners office / DSLE. The website of Labor Commissioners office has quite detailed info. I would like to know specifically about California Labor Commissioners office and as to how they will handle the change in the wage claim AFTER its submission should I have to change to lets say $500 instead of $5000 in the middle of the claim (should the employer decide to pay the 4500). I am not sure you are from CA. Can you answer this question with personal experience on it?

Hello. I am licensed in California. Let me clarify the facts: did you already submit a wage claim to them?

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Customer reply replied 1 month ago
not yet, I am working on it. I have to mail it/email it to them but I can totally see this guy sending me a partial check to make it not worth my while but I do not want to be 'forced' in one way or another to drop the case if he does not pay up fully
Customer reply replied 1 month ago
I am concerned that I would have to 'report' this partial payment mid processing by DSLE and like all other government work it might put a spanner in the wheels...

I understand. So, the bright side is that the LC's office works just like any other office that you must go to if you have a complaint. When you make a request, someone in a local field office is going to be assigned to your case. This person will either meet with you in person or you can communicate electronically or through the mail. This is the same person who they, or their staff, will contact the employer to discuss the issues. They will also take a look at any paperwork you have including any contracts, pay stubs, or any other evidence you have to support your case.

If, in the middle of your case, things change, such that you either a) find out your owed more or less money or b) he ends up paying a partial amount, then you can contact the people/person who is handling your particular claim and let them know. You also have the right to drop it altogether if you file and he ends up paying. This department handles a lot of complaints, so they encourage you to be sure that you have as much documentation as possible to make their jobs easier. Because they know that people are relying on this $ to live, they usually act without haste. If you have a change to your claim, it really won't change the timeline that much.

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You usually just have to submit the DSLE Form 1 to the state and they can begin processing. Processing times vary on your county, but in my experience, they don't spin their wheels when handling these claims.

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Customer reply replied 1 month ago
I see. Phew! good to know it will be one contact point.Thank you!

Yes. But please keep in mind that funding and staffing changes may impact that a bit so stay flexible, but otherwise, they'll assign it to a person to act as a conduit between you and the employer.

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Customer reply replied 1 month ago
great, thank you for your help.

Did you have any other questions for me today that I could help you with?

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Customer reply replied 1 month ago
no thank you, ***** ***** it, appreciate your time

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