The most common examples of employee law suits relate to minimum wage and overtime claims. Specific examples of such claims relate to independent contractor misclassification, claims against restaurants for improper ‘tip credit’ use, and failure to pay overtime or commissions.
Statue Based Employee Law Suits
There are several federal and state laws that are designed to level the playing field for employment law suits, many of which provide for certain enhancements (treble damages) and statutory attorneys’ fee awards such that you do not need to fund a law suit. Otherwise stated, for most of our claims, we only look to your current/former employer for our fees. Statues that help employees assert their rights include:
Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA) – CPSIA protects certain employees from retaliation for reporting potential consumer product safety violations to their employers or to the government.
Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) – The FLSA sets out various labor regulations regarding minimum wages and requirements for overtime pay. Remedies under the FLSA may include back pay, treble damages, expert witness fees, and reasonable attorneys’ fees.
National Transit Systems Security Act of 2007 (NTSSA) – NTSSA includes whistleblower protections for public transportation employees who report noncompliance with safety regulations for public transportation agencies.
Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) – While RCRA’s primary purpose is to protect human health and the environment, RCRA includes a provision that protects whistleblowers who are retaliated against for reporting potential violations regarding the disposal of solid and hazardous waste.
Surface Transportation Assistance Act of 1982 (STAA) – STAA whistleblower protections are for employees who report certain safety violations relating to commercial transportion. Remedies under STAA may include reinstatement, back pay, litigation costs, expert witness fees, and reasonable attorney fees.
Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) – While TSCA’s primary purpose is to regulate chemicals, TSCA provides anti-retaliation provisions that could allow for reinstatement, back-pay, and other compensatory relief for those who are retaliated against for reporting TSCA violations.
Many of the above referenced statutes require that an employee file a complaint with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), part of the U.S. Department of Labor, within 30 to 180 days. These complaints are often a condition precedent to filing a law suit which is usually filed as an administrative law claim and heard by an administrative law judge from the U.S. Department of Labor.
Maryland Wage Payment and Collection Law (MWPCL) – The MWPCL provides various incentives to allow an employee to seek already earned wages and commissions. Maryland has one of the broadest definitions of “wages” in the nation. Remedies under the MWPCL may include back pay, treble damages, expert witness fees, and reasonable attorneys’ fees.
Maryland Wage and Hour Law (MW&HL) – The MW&HL sets out various laws regarding minimum wages and requirements for overtime pay. Remedies under the MW&HL may include back pay, treble damages, expert witness fees, and reasonable attorneys’ fees.