You tend to find that a large number of employers are required (thanks to both state and federal laws) to pay their employees minimum wage at the very least for every hour that they work. With this in mind, there shouldn’t be any justification for an employer to refuse to pay their employees this minimum wage, should there?
Have You Not Been Paid?
If you haven’t been paid, then there may well be a genuine reason for this; however, if you believe this lack of payment is part of a deliberate attempt to not give you what you are owed, it may be time to take legal action against your employer. There are law firms out there that specialize in Colorado Wage Theft Law and would be able to take action against your employer and get you exactly what you’re owed. You should discuss the matter in depth with an employment lawyer before taking action.
When Can an Employer Refuse to Pay You?
An employer is unable to refuse to pay you for work that you have genuinely done. There are laws embedded within state law and at the federal level that set out that the minimum wage, at the very least, needs to be paid. If there is a contract in place between yourself and your employer, then you should know exactly what you are owed and what you should be due to receive. If they refuse (or try to refuse) to pay you, then this would be regarded as a breach of contract, not to mention a violation of employment law.
The only instance when an employer could justifiably get away with not paying you would be during instances when you haven’t actually completed the work that you were supposed to complete. For example, if you are used to working a 40-hour week but on one instance only do a 35 hour week (and there is no sick or holiday pay taken into account for this), then you should only expect to receive payment for those 35 hours.
Even if you have been fired or have quit your job, you employer is still under an obligation to pay you for all of the work that you have done. This is the case even if the paycheck has been deferred until the next normal payday.
What Should You Do If Your Employer Refuses to Pay You?
The very first step that you should take if you have not received a paycheck that you are owed is contact whoever it is that is employed by your employer to sort out all of these payments. Chances are it is a genuine mistake and easily fixable.
If you don’t get the answer that you want and your employer refuses to pay you, you then have the right to sue your employer for damages as they are in breach of the aforementioned state and federal legislation. You should consider reaching out to a law firm that specializes in this kind of law as they will be able to talk you through all of the potential ways forward and explain the legal jargon.