Wage and Hour Laws & Wrongful Termination in Utah
Shimoda & Rodriguez Law, PC is a premier employment law firm in Utah with experienced wage and hour and wrongful termination claim lawyers.
For 15 years, Galen Shimoda and his team have provided robust and successful representation to clients. Our experienced legal team can represent employees whose employers have violated Utah labor and state immigration laws. When you need to hold an employer accountable, Shimoda & Rodriguez Law, PC can represent you.
What is Wage Theft?
As the name suggests, wage theft occurs when employers do not pay workers according to the law.
Wage theft examples include:
- Paying an employee less than minimum wage ($7.25 per hour)
- Failing to pay for work, including any time workers were required to be onsite for meetings or training
- Failing to pay overtime of at least 1.5 times the normal hourly rate if the enterprise is engaged in interstate commerce (Utah does not have a state law governing overtime pay)
- Failing to keep a set pay schedule or paid hourly workers less than two times per month or salaried workers less than one time per month
- Withholding or diverting wages with an employee’s permission or a court order
- Failing to provide paystubs with complete information about an employee’s earnings and deductions for a pay period
- Pressuring employees to return or repay wages
Hire a Utah employment lawyer with a top-rated attorney-client relationship.
How Do I Prove Wage and Hour Violations?
If you believe your employer violated Utah state law, the following items will help prove your wage claim:
- Work schedules or timecards
- A copy of your employment contract (if you have one)
- Copies of other written agreements between you and your employer
- A copy of the company’s written policies
It is illegal for your employer to fire you in retaliation for making or participating in a wage claim.
What Is Wrongful Termination?
Utah state law defines wrongful termination as the dismissal or firing of an employee for an illegal reason, which may violate federal anti-discrimination laws or breach of contract. Universally employers are legally prohibited from firing an employee based on:
- Discrimination based on race, gender, age, ethnicity, national origin, religion, pregnancy, marital status, or disability.
- Reporting an employment violation or bringing wrongdoing to light as a whistleblower.
- Filing a whistleblower claim. Whistleblower protection prevents an employer from retaliating against an employee.
- Taking time off work under the Family and Medical Leave Act
- Violating their contract with an employee
If you do not have a formal employment contract, you are considered an at-will employee, which means your employer can fire you at any time. However, the law prohibits employers from firing workers for reasons deemed illegal, some of which are listed above.
If you have an employment contract, it may outline your responsibilities and the terms for terminating your employment. If your employer fires you for reasons not stated in your contract of employment, you may be able to prove wrongful termination.
If you’ve been fired due to your race, ethnicity, national origin or faced other discrimination, contact us today.
How We Approach Wrongful Termination & Wage Theft
- Initial Consultation: Our experienced wrongful termination lawyers or wage and hour attorneys will speak with you and gather the specifics about your case.
- Review & Plan: Once we have the specifics of your case, our team can begin building a legal strategy to achieve your best outcome.
- Representation & Resolution: While our goal is often to settle a wrongful termination lawsuit or alleged wage and hour violations through mediation, there are times when the case goes to court. Should this happen, our attorneys will aggressively represent you and pursue an outcome in your best interest.
I was in need of some assistance regarding a possible labor law issue, and I reached out to Shimoda Law. I was able to speak to Galen regarding my issue with a free consultation which I found to be valuable given many attorneys in this realm tend to want something for their time.
Galen listened to my issue, asked clarifying questions, and in the end, provided his advice regarding whether I should pursue anything against the employer. While he recommended nothing be done, he explained the reasons from his experience and legal opinion.
I really appreciated the ability to talk to someone who knows this field of law prior to making any decisions that would have likely panned out to nothing.– Daniel B.
Frequently Asked Questions About Utah Labor Laws
What Should I Do If My Employer Violates Utah Wage And Hour Laws?
The strength of a wage and hour claim is primarily based on the frequency of wage theft. Your potential award from a one- or two-time violation may be minimal, at best.
If you are not the only employee suffering from wage theft, you and your coworkers can file a joint class-action lawsuit, where the frequency of wage and hour law violations spread across the company’s personnel will bolster the case.
What Should I Do If I Don't Still Have The Required Documents For A Wage Theft Claim?
In Utah, only state and local government employees have a right to access their personnel files. If you work for a private employer, you can request a copy of your file, but Utah law does not require your employer to give it to you.
How Long Does A Wage Theft Case Take?
The Utah Labor Commission closes about 75 percent of wage theft claims in 180 days or six months, but that’s if you directly file your wage your hour claim with the Utah Anti-discrimination and Labor Division Wage Claim Unit.
The Wage Claim Unit processes, investigates, mediates, adjudicates, and files judgments for more than 40,000 inquiries per year.
An employer must pay you unpaid wages within 24 hours after the employee has provided a written demand or within 24 hours from the time of separation.
Employers are required to pay the employee’s wages at the same rate from the date of the demand until paid, up to 60 days.
How Long Does A Wrongful Termination Claim Case Take?
The time it takes to settle a wrongful termination case varies widely for each specific case. Our team has settled wrongful termination cases in as little time as three months to as long as four years plus. The complexity of the case and the appeal process are common reasons for litigation taking longer than a year.
How Do You Prove Wrongful Termination?
One of the first steps to prove wrongful termination is to show that the employer’s claim for terminating your employment is false. A typical example is being fired on the grounds of poor performance. In this scenario, you need to prove your performance prior to being fired was satisfactory. After this is established, our legal team will use the facts available to prove your employment was unlawfully terminated.
Do I Need To Use A Law Firm Near Me?
While it is not necessary to hire an attorney near your city of employment, there are some key benefits. Hiring a local employment law lawyer can expedite filing cases with local courts. They can also understand the legal system better. Our team of employment law specialists is centrally located in Utah, not far from Salt Lake City, allowing us to serve the state of Utah effectively and efficiently.
Schedule Your Initial Consultation With Our Employment Lawyers
If you believe you’ve been wrongfully terminated or a victim of wage theft, contact our office for a free evaluation of the strength of your case. We provide phone consultations. To speak with an attorney, call us at (833) 201-0213 or send our firm an email. We will promptly return all emails with a phone call.
Our office is located at 1414 E. Murray Holladay Road, Holladay, UT 84117.