Unpaid wages from temp agency

This is a tricky one. I have gone to mediation and the small claim is going to trial. I worked for a temp agency that placed me at a trash company from 12/06-7/08. I was requested to keep my own timesheet, have it signed by the trash company managers, and fax it in to the temp agency. During this employment time I worked several hours that were not calculated on this timesheet either by mistake or on purpose. I am unsure if the managers were aware or not of these hours that weren't being compensated for. Also, during my employment there as a data entry clerk, I was requested to perform painting, remodeling, and drive company vehicles without any proper safety considerations. I filed a small claim against my temp agency for the unpaid wages and for 'danger pay'. My employer (temp agency) says that they have no proof of these hours worked and that since I am an at-will employee that the expansion of my job duties is not covered. The only proof of these unpaid wages I have is a written record of the unpaid hours. My question is, should I continue on to trial or should I drop the case. Also, are they allowed to countersue? I appreciate your help on this!

1 answer  |  asked Nov 20, 2008 9:31 PM [EST]  |  applies to Ohio

Answers (1)

Neil Klingshirn
Claim for unpaid wages

You are entitled to be paid at least the minimum wage for all hours that you work at the request of an employer.

The employer has an obligation to keep records of the hours that you work. If the employer fails to pay you and fails to have a record of the hours that you work, then the court should consider the record of hours worked that you kept should convince the court of the hours that you worked.

The temporary employment agency may claim that they were not asked by the trash company to assign you to the additional hours. If that is the case, you may need to amend your small claims complaint to name the trash company and seek the additional hours from them. Both the temporary company and the trash company are considered to be your "employer" in a temp agency situation.

I am not aware of a law that requires an employer to pay additional compensation for performing dangerous work. Instead, an employer has an obligation to provide a safe workplace and proper safety equipment.

However, check "Ohio Revised Code section 4113.15" (search this site or Google that term), which allows the court to impose a $200 penalty on the employer for failing to pay you on time for your hours worked. Finally, you can file a complaint with the US Department of Labor or the Ohio Department of Commerce for unpaid minimum wage. Both agencies have the authority to investigate the claim.

Best regards,

Neil Klingshirn

posted by Neil Klingshirn  |  Nov 21, 2008 08:18 AM [EST]

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