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GAINS IN WORKER PROTECTION LAWS - PLEASE READ
Thanks to efforts from organized labor in last year's elections, this year, delegates and senators in the state of Virginia made good in their promise to have labor issues in mind passing relevant legislations.
THESE HIGHLY REGARDED BILLS ARE NOW LAW:
Workers can now sue their employers for the following:
· Nonpayment of wages (triple damages, attorney’s fees) 1
· Nonpayment of overtime (triple damages, attorney’s fees)
· Minimum wage violations (triple damages, attorney’s fees)
· Illegal misclassification as an independent contractor 2
General Contractors are now legally liable if any of their subcontractors:
· Do not pay workers their wages in full
· Do not pay overtime
· Do not pay workers on time
· Pay workers with a bad check (or a check that can only be cashed at one location)
General Contractors may also be criminally liable if wage theft by their subcontractor is over $10,000.
Virginia’s State Agencies have new power to enforce the misclassification of workers:
· Tax Department: $1,000 first violation, $2,500 second violation, $5,000 for third and subsequent violations 3
· Debarment from public contracts on second offense
· Burden of proof on the EMPLOYER to prove a worker is an independent contractor
· Potential loss of contractors’ license on first offense. 4
WHY DOES THIS MATTER?
These laws affect us all. They aim to address a large problem in our industry regarding wage theft. They intend to protect and support working families effectively and recover unpaid wages.
They are necessary for addressing situations that unrepresented workers face commonly in our construction industry.
Other states have already passed similar laws for years and have served to prevent unjust contractors that cut corners and cheat the system to increase their own wealth.
WHAT ROLE DO WE PLAY?
Now it is the critical time to make sure you are fully informed and able to prevent wage theft, without fear of retaliation.
LET'S ERADICATE THE PROBLEM
JOIN US in the effort to have good jobs in the Commonwealth. If you know of a family or friend that has been a victim of wage theft, please speak up!
Click Here to Report "Wage Theft"
For more information, or help in informing you how to recover unpaid wages, call us at:
Carpenters' Union (301) 512-5109