According to Reuters, a Warren Buffet-backed automaker has agreed to pay a fine in California over wage payment disputes.
The news service reported that China’s BYD Co Ltd has agreed to pay a fine to settle a California case which alleged that it failed to pay five Chinese workers temporarily working in the United States the required minimum wage of $8 per hour.
The lawsuit was filed in October 2013. The manufacturer reportedly disputed the claims, saying that workers were paid the equivalent of $12-$16 per hour in Chinese currency. The company reportedly agreed to pay a $1,900 fine to settle the matter, but is now also facing other legal issues.
According to Reuters, the company is meeting with the California Labor Commissioner’s office to discuss allegations over the omission of information on employee check stubs and the alleged denial of flexibility on rest breaks for eight employees. The company has denied the allegations.
BYD makes electric buses in the U.S. and currently has 50 employees in California. It said it plans to add more than 100 employees next year. Reuters reported that BYD “signed several contracts last year, including one to supply the U.S. cities of Los Angeles and Long Beach, and to Amsterdam’s Schiphol airport.”
Have My Wages Been Withheld Illegally?
Wage and overtime claims are difficult to prove, but in California, employers are prohibited from docking your wages below minimum wage. This applies to anyone performing work inside the state.
Laws are in place to protect employees, allowing them to receive just compensation for the work they perform. In some cases, and allegedly in the one reported on above, companies attempt to find loopholes to try to work around compensation laws. This can involve working with employees from other nations, while paying them at rates below the state-mandated minimum wage. If you believe this is occurring, you should contact our experienced Los Angeles employment lawyers.
If you feel like you are not being paid appropriately or legally, contact our office today to schedule a consultation by calling 310-273-3180.
Kesluk, Silverstein & Jacob– Los Angeles employment attorneys