Unpaid Wages<br/>Unpaid Overtime<br/>Tip Violations

Unpaid Wages
Unpaid Overtime
Tip Violations

Wrongful Termination<br/>Discrimination<br/>Retaliation

Wrongful Termination

Sexual Harassment<br/>Hostile Work Environment

Sexual Harassment
Hostile Work Environment

Displacement by H1B Workers<br/>Whistleblower Status

Displacement by H1B Workers
Whistleblower Status



Unpaid Wages, Unpaid Overtime & Tip Violations

Unpaid Wages • Unpaid Overtime • Tip Violations

According to statistics, more than a half of employers violate wage laws and regulations in some way and more than 90% of immigrant employees are shorted on pay. Federal, state and local laws and regulations determine how employees must be paid and set the standards for a minimum wage and overtime pay for non-exempt employees. Often, state and local laws set standards which are more stringent than the federal law, and employers must comply with such stricter standards. 

At Robert Wisniewski P.C. we are committed to vindicating employees’ rights to recover pay and benefits for all hours worked, overtime pay and other pay and benefits which are due them. We exclusively represent employees and do so on a contigency fee basis, that is if no money is collected, you pay nothing to our firm.

Below are some of the ways in which employers violate wage and hour laws: 

Wage / Overtime Wage Violations:

  • paying employees less than a minimum wage 
  • not paying for every hour worked 
  • not paying at least time and a half for overtime that is work over forty (40) hours in a week
  • paying “straight” for all hours worked including those over forty (40) hours in a week
  • paying employees from two companies for work over forty (40) hours in a week
  • not being paid for travel time from company shop to a jobsite/between jobs or for waiting time
  • being forced to perform off-the-clock work
  • getting paid less than other employees because of age or gender

Tip-sharing Violations by Restaurants and Other Service Providers:

  • including managers and other non-server employees in the tip-pool
  • stealing servers’ or other employees tips by managers or the boss 
  • stealing tips by classifying gratuity as a “service fee”

Misclassification of  Employees to Avoid Payment for All Hours Worked or for Overtime:

  • as salaried employees with bogus titles, such as “leader” “supervisor” or  “manager”
  • as independent contractors or subcontractors 
  • as servers and bussers when they in fact perform non-server work in restaurants
  • as superintendents in residential buildings and having them perform construction work
  • as managers or professionals to avoid payment of overtime
  • as unpaid interns or students when they perform work for profit 

Failure to Pay Prevailing Wages on City, State and Federal Projects:

  • for work on Davis-Bacon Act projects or other public works
  • paying workers less than prevailing wages
  • misclassification of trade to the lowest trade not to pay proper prevailing wages
  • forcing workers to split pay with, or to pay kickbacks to, bosses or managers

Failure to Pay Union Wages:

  • the owner uses non-union company to perform union jobs and does not pay union scale wages
  • you were prevented from joining the union while working on an union job
  • the union is conducting an unending “investigation” of, or refuses to investigate, your complaint regarding failure to pay union wages

Wage Notice and Paystub Violations: 

Federal and state wage laws and regulations mandate that employees be furnished a wage notice at the beginning of employment and whenever the employee’s compensation changes or should change (as when a minimum wage goes up). 

Employees must also receive a statement of wages paid which must contain specific information mandated by law and regulations. 

In New York state, for example, failure to comply with such laws entitles employees to statutory damages of up to Five Thousand Dollars each for wage notice and paystub violations. 

Unlawful Deductions from Your Paycheck:

Federal and state laws and regulations limit deductions from employees’ wages to those which are for employee’s interest and to which an employee specifically agreed to, such as deductions for medical premiums or union dues. Examples of unlawful deductions include deducting from paychecks amounts for: 

  • employee’s negligent work
  • employee’s sloppy work 
  • reducing a paycheck for breaks shorter than 20 minutes (such as cigarette breaks)
  • forcing employees to pay tickets or other penalties to governmental authorities for infractions
  • forcing employees to pay kickbacks, pay “tribute” or  “gifts” or make contributions to causes

Habitually Paying Employees Late: 

Laws and regulations mandate how often employees must be paid. In general, employees performing physical work, must be paid once a week, and those performing office work, not less than bi-weekly. If your employer habitually pays you late, you may be entitled to statutory penalties equal to the amounts that were paid late. This is often true at small construction or other service companies where bosses claim to employees that they themselves did not get paid for the job, so workers must wait. Remember, you are not your boss’s partner in the business, and he or she does not share profits with you. As an employee, you do not need to wait for your boss to get paid.

The above examples do not exhaust all the ways in which employers take advantage of employees.


In New York, you may recover unpaid wages for up to six (6) years (in other states and under the federal law for up to three (3) years) from the date these wages were due. So, with every passing payday, you may be losing the ability to recover the wages that are due you.

You may recover unpaid wages and other damages even if:

  • you have no work permit or green card
  • you do not have copies of the paychecks you received 
  • you were paid in cash
  • you were forced to pay kickbacks to keep your job
  • the owner closed the business
  • the business declared bankruptcy


Contact Robert Wisniewski Today For A Free,
Confidential Consultation and Case Evaluation
(212) 267-2102