The attorneys at Hiden, Rott & Oertle are vigilant protectors of the rights of workers in San Diego and Imperial County. We are proud of our work standing up for employees against employers who fail to meet their responsibilities under local, state, or federal laws.
Under California labor and employment laws, employers must provide their workers with complete and accurate information about their wages with every paycheck. These “pay stub” requirements help employees ensure they are being paid what they are due.
When employers violate California’s strict pay stub laws, they are not only subject to hefty fines imposed by the state, but they may also be liable for damages payable to the employees involved. Our dedicated San Diego labor and employment attorneys stand ready to help workers who believe that their employers have breached their legal pay stub obligations and we use our experience and commitment to hold those employers to account.
What Information Needs to Be Included on a California Pay Stub?
California Labor Code Section 226(a) sets forth nine specific items that must be included in a worker’s pay statement:
- Gross wages earned
- The total number of hours the employee worked (unless the employee is exempt from overtime)
- The number of “piece-rate” units earned, if applicable
- All deductions made from the employee’s wages
- Net wages earned
- The beginning and end dates of the pay period
- The name of the employee and the last four digits (only) of his or her Social Security number (or an employee identification number other than a Social Security number)
- The name and address of the employer
- All applicable hourly rates in effect during the pay period and the corresponding hours the employee worked at each of those hourly rates.
Suffering “Injury” and Recovering Damages for Pay Stub Violations
California’s pay stub law provides that any employee who “suffers injury” as a result of his or her employer’s knowing and intentional failure to include all required information in a pay statement is entitled to obtain the greater of his or her actual damages or $50 for the employer’s first violation. The employee is also entitled to recover $100 for each violation in a subsequent pay period, but not to exceed a total penalty of $4,000.
Importantly, an employee who proves that his or her employer violated the requirements of this law is entitled to recover all costs and reasonable attorney’s fees incurred in their efforts. This means that a successful pay stub plaintiff will ultimately not have to pay to enforce his or her legal rights under California’s pay stub law.
The law also empowers one employee to seek relief for his or her coworker. Depending on the facts and circumstance, an employee can sue an employer for pay stub violations of Section 226(a) on behalf of all employees and even former employees who received deficient wage statements.
Note that the employee must “suffer injury” as a result of the legally deficient wage statement to recover damages. Such an injury can be shown if the employee cannot promptly and easily determine from the wage statement alone one or more of the following:
- The amount of the gross wages or net wages paid to the employee during the pay period
- Total hours worked during the pay period
- All deductions taken during the pay period
- The dates for which the employee is being paid
- All applicable hourly rates in effect and the corresponding number of hours worked at that rate during the pay period
- The name and address of the employer and, if the employer is a farm labor contractor, the name, and address of the legal entity that secured the services of the employer during the pay period
- The name of the employee and only the last four digits of his or her social security number or an employee identification number other than a social security number.
Call Hiden, Rott & Oertle Today to Discuss Your Pay Stub Violation Issues
If you believe that your employer has violated California’s strict pay stub requirements, you may be entitled to compensation. Please call Hiden, Rott & Oertle today at 619-296-5884 or use the form on our contact page to set up your free consultation with one of our experienced attorneys.