Back wages are wages that are owed to an employee by their employee. Back wages can result for several reasons, including:

  • Mistakes in calculations by administration
  • Issues related to wage garnishment
  • Unpaid wages in connection with termination
  • Disputes over overtime rates
  • Conflicts involving leave or vacation pay
  • Pay increases that are applied retroactively

Back wages are sometimes called retro pay or back pay, depending on the jurisdiction.

How Much Am I Entitled to Recover in Back Wages?

In most cases, the amount of back wages can be easily calculated according to the employee’s previous rates and earnings amounts. Here, the employee may need to cooperate with the company’s human resource department in order to obtain pay stubs and other documents to help calculate the amount of back wages owed.

Some complications can arise if there is a dispute over the number of hours worked, or over the type of wage involved. This is especially common for disputes involving overtime pay. Most states require the employer to pay the worker time and a half rates for overtime pay.

In addition, the employee may actually be entitled to other amounts. For instance, the employee may also be entitled to recover damages related to wrongful termination or discrimination if these are connected with the back pay issues.

Are There Any Restrictions on Back Wage Lawsuits?

In some cases, there may be restrictions on the amount of damages issued in a wage and salary lawsuit. For instance, if you’ve already been compensated through your company’s internal dispute resolution department, your ability to recover damages in court may be limited or even prevented. Thus, it is important to choose your method of relief and weigh your options before you pursue a course of action. You may need to hire a lawyer for advice on which type of legal remedy to pursue.

Do I Need a Lawyer for Help with Back Wage Disputes?

Filing a claim for a back wage dispute may require important decisions on your part. You may need to hire an employment lawyer if you need help filing a claim for back wages. If you need legal representation or advice, a qualified lawyer in your area can provide you with assistance so that you can get the best type of remedy for your situation.