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Can I Sue for Wage Theft Without Getting Fired?

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Employees in the banking and other industries deserve to be fairly compensated for the work they do, including the time they spend working beyond 40 hours a week. Federal labor law protects workers’ right to fair compensation, but it also protects their right to sue their employer for wage theft without facing retaliation.

The Fair Labor and Standards Act was passed to establish protections such as minimum wage and overtime pay for workers, so that they may be compensated fairly for the work they do.

However, some employers try to circumvent the FLSA in order to pay their employees less than they’re entitled to. In those cases, employees can sue their employers to recover stolen wages without fear of being fired, thanks to the FLSA’s anti-retaliation provision.

The anti-retaliation provision prevents companies from using such tactics as firing or demoting workers, reducing hours, assigning undesirable shifts, or purposely giving false performance reviews that negatively affect workers’ positions to get back at employees who file lawsuits.

The FLSA also guarantees that most employees who work a 40-hour workweek are entitled to time-and-a-half for every hour worked over 40. In order to avoid paying overtime, employers may classify a position as exempt from overtime eligibility, even if that position performs work that makes the employee eligible.

Citigroup, Capital One Financial Corporation, JPMorgan Chase, HSBC, and Wells Fargo & Company are currently at the center of allegations that they haven’t paid certain employees the overtime compensation they’re due. The FLSA’s anti-retaliation provision protects their right to do so without fear of termination or blacklisting in the industry if they decide to find a job at another bank.

In the Citigroup case, certain employees allege that Citigroup misclassified their positions as exempt from overtime pay, preventing them from receiving time-and-a-half pay for their overtime hours. The positions currently identified as wrongfully exempt from overtime pay are AML Compliance Analysts, A & R Analysts, Data Analysts, Financial Reporting Analysts, Implementation Analysts, Quality Assurance Specialists, and Solutions Analysts.

Capital One Finance Corp., JPMorgan Chase, and HSBC have also been accused of violating the overtime rights for employees in those positions.

Unethical behavior like this is not limited to banks though, and employees in many fields are routinely cheated out of overtime. Commonly, employees in positions such an sales representatives, call center workers, IT workers, and retail employees are at risk of being unfairly denied overtime.

How to Fight Wage Theft

Just because your employer says you don’t qualify for overtime doesn’t mean it’s true. Wage theft needs to be reported, and the law protects workers from retaliation for reporting it. If you think you are unfairly being denied overtime, our overtime attorneys are here to help you fight wage theft. Contact us for a free confidential consultation.