E. An employer who willfully and with intent to defraud fails or refuses to pay wages in accordance with this section, unless the failure to pay was because of a bona fide dispute between the employer and its employee: 1. Site developed by the Division of Legislative Automated Systems (DLAS). Within 15 days of receipt of notice of the alleged violation, the employer may request an informal conference regarding such violation with the Commissioner. An employer engaged in agricultural employment including agribusiness and forestry, upon request of its employee, shall furnish the employee a written statement of the gross wages earned by the employee during any pay period and the amount and purpose of any deductions therefrom. The Virginia Wage Payment Act (Va. Code § 40.1-29) (the “Act”) is intended to curb “wage theft” within the Commonwealth by, among other things, prohibiting employers from reducing or … To an employee or employees is guilty of a Class 6 felony (i) if the value of the wages earned and not paid is $10,000 or more or (ii) regardless of the value of the wages earned and not paid, if the conviction is a second or subsequent conviction under this section. The General Assembly also approved a measure (SB 838) creating a private cause of action for violations of the Virginia Wage Payment Act, which primarily governs the form and frequency of pay for employees, and imposes restrictions on withholding and forfeiture of wages. These bills amend the Virginia Wage Payment Act and are designed to support workers and Virginia’s economy as it rebounds from the COVID-19 pandemic. Protection of Employees » Article 2. 21-5-1. The major state laws governing pay day requirements is known as the Virginia Minimum Wage Act. The amended Virginia Wage Payment Act provides that employees may seek to redress wage theft individually, jointly, or in a collective action. Virginia employers could face a surge of new wage and hour claims if they don’t comply with recent amendments to the Commonwealth’s Wage Payment Act. D. No employer shall require any employee, except executive personnel, to sign any contract or agreement which provides for the forfeiture of the employee's wages for time worked as a condition of employment or the continuance therein, except as otherwise provided by law. On April 11, 2020, Virginia Governor Ralph Northam signed nearly two dozen bills into law, many of which will have a significant impact on employers, employees, and the broader Virginia workforce. Among other things, the VWPA requires employers to establish and comply with a pay schedule for employees that meets certain parameters. Categories: An employee must bring an action for unpaid wages within three years. The decision of the Commissioner shall be final. Protection of Employees » Article 1.1. L. An action under this section shall be commenced within three years after the cause of action accrued. VA Dept. The Virginia Wage Payment Act already regulated the time and manner in which employers had to pay their employees. Workers are also entitled to overtime pay for hours over 40 in a single workweek. Collective actions follow the same procedures as those provided for by the federal Fair Labor Standards Act. Virginia Minimum Wage Act – Page 2 1.00 Virginia Minimum Wage Act A. It is important for you to be able to count on a steady and consistent paycheck, and the law supports your right to be paid regularly. The paystub or online accounting shall include sufficient information to enable the employee to determine how the gross and net pay were calculated. Virginia unpaid wages lawyer, Virginia wage and hour attorneys, Virginia wage and hour law, Virginia wage and hour lawyer, Virginia wage payment law. For purposes of this section, the determination as to the "value of the wages earned" shall be made by combining all wages the employer failed or refused to pay pursuant to this section. It regulates how much workers must be paid, how many hours they can be required to work, and the special rules that apply to younger workers. The major federal law governing wages and hours is called the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). Collective actions follow the same procedures as those provided for by the federal Fair Labor Standards Act. However, the right to sue to recover unpaid wages applies to all employees, and liability extends to all employers. THE WEST VIRGINIA WAGE PAYMENT AND COLLECTION ACT This abstract must be placed in an area accessible to all employees in accordance with the requirements of W. Va. Code §21-5-9. Under the Virginia Wage Payment Act, you have rights that can protect how much you … An amendment to Virginia Code 40.1-29 (Virginia Payment of Wage Law) adopted in 2019 requires employers to provide employees The Virginia Department of Labor and Industry (DOLI) has clarified that the requirement to provide employees with a detailed, written statement for each regular pay date applies to all employees, 595, 851; 2009, c. 728; 2016, c. 593; 2019, cc. Labor and Employment » Chapter 3. Payment of wages or salaries shall be (i) in lawful money of the United States, (ii) by check payable at face value upon demand in lawful money of the United States, (iii) by electronic automated fund transfer in lawful money of the United States into an account in the name of the employee at a financial institution designated by the employee, or (iv) by credit to a prepaid debit card … Under the virginia wage payment act vwpa salaried employees must be paid at least once a month. VA Code § 1-214. The new law was passed on April 22, 2020, and becomes effective on July 1, 2020. Signed into law April 12, the wage theft legislation includes: The Act aims to protect the rights and wages of workers, while providing a level playing field among the state businesses which must follow these rules. REQUIRES THE EMPLOYER TO: Pay employee wages at least twice a month, with no more than 19 days between paydays (W. Va. Code §21-5-3(a)). Yes. Virginia has adopted a pay transparency law that prohibits employers from discharging or taking any other retaliatory action against an employee for discussing wages or compensation with another employee. By Dallas Hammer and Katherine Krems Most importantly, the amendments to the Virginia Wage Payment Act provide employees with the right to sue in court to recover unpaid wages. § 213(a)(1), as amended, establishing an exemption from the Act's overtime premium pay requirements; the rate of pay; the gross wages earned by the employee during the pay period; and the amount and purpose of any deductions therefrom. Wages include performance-based bonuses and commissions. § 216(b), against the employer in a court of competent jurisdiction to recover payment of the wages, and the court shall award the wages owed, an additional equal amount as liquidated damages, plus prejudgment interest thereon as provided in subsection G, and reasonable attorney fees and costs. In addition to any civil or criminal penalty provided by this section, and without regard to any exhaustion of alternative administrative remedies provided for in this section, if an employer fails to pay wages to an employee in accordance with this section, the employee may bring an action, individually, jointly, with other aggrieved employees, or on behalf of similarly situated employees as a collective action consistent with the collective action procedures of the Fair Labor Standards Act, 29 U.S.C. In addition, the statute mandates that a prevailing employee is entitled to: Under the new statute, an employer acts knowingly if it has actual knowledge, deliberately ignores the truth, or recklessly disregards the truth. Table of Contents » Title 40.1. Last updated: July 11th, 2020. © 2020 Zuckerman Law, All Rights Reserved. Virginia Minimum Wage Act » 40.1-28.10. In addition, following the issuance of a final order by the Commissioner or a court, the Commissioner may engage private counsel, approved by the Attorney General, to collect any moneys owed to the employee or the Commonwealth. Time and medium of payment; withholding wages; written statement of earnings; agreement for forfeiture of wages; proceedings to enforce compliance; penalties, Article 2. However, an employer that elects not to pay wages or salaries in accordance with clause (i) or (ii) to an employee who is hired after January 1, 2010, shall be permitted to pay wages or salaries by credit to a prepaid debit card or card account in accordance with clause (iv), even though such employee has not affirmatively consented thereto, if the employee fails to designate an account at a financial institution in accordance with clause (iii) and the employer arranges for such card or card account to be issued through a network system through which the employee shall have the ability to make at least one free withdrawal or transfer per pay period, which withdrawal may be for any sum in such card or card account as the employee may elect, using such card or card account at financial institutions participating in such network system. She is focused on finding creative solutions and maximizing her clients’ recoveries. The Commissioner shall prescribe procedures for the payment of proposed assessments of penalties that are not contested by employers. Prior to the 2020 General Assembly, the Virginia Wage Payment Act Liquidated damages (double damages for all violations and treble damages for knowing violations). Code of Virginia Table of Contents » Title 40.1. 320 (2015) (citations omitted). Frequency of Wage Payments. Pay; Assignment of Wages; Sale of Merchandise to Employees » § 40.1-29. In April 2020, Governor Northam signed Senate Bill 838 and House Bill 123, which amend the Virginia Wage Payment Act. The amended Virginia Wage Payment Act provides that employees may seek to redress wage theft individually, jointly, or in a collective action. I am grateful for the General Assembly’s ongoing partnership as we address these critical issues.”. Semimonthly payment of wages by railroads. Anyone who is covered by the federal minimum wage law is not covered by Virginia's minimum wage law. Payment of wages or salaries shall be (i) in lawful money of the United States, (ii) by check payable at face value upon demand in lawful money of the United States, (iii) by electronic automated fund transfer in lawful money of the United States into an account in the name of the employee at a financial institution designated by the employee, or (iv) by credit to a prepaid debit card or card account from which the employee is able to withdraw or transfer funds with full written disclosure by the employer of any applicable fees and affirmative consent thereto by the employee. The current WPA requires employers to pay salaried employees at least once a month and to pay hourly employees at least once every two weeks or twice a month. However, as noted above, administrative remedies are available, and an employee’s deadline to sue in court may be extended while the employee is pursuing a remedy through the administrative process. The statute also does not specify who is a covered employee or employer. If the court finds that the employer knowingly failed to pay wages to an employee in accordance with this section, the court shall award the employee an amount equal to triple the amount of wages due and reasonable attorney fees and costs. G. In addition to being subject to any other penalty provided by the provisions of this section, any employer who fails to make payment of wages in accordance with subsection A shall be liable for the payment of all wages due, and an additional equal amount as liquidated damages, plus interest at an annual rate of eight percent accruing from the date the wages were due. The law’s amendments provide for strong remedies. Prior to law school, she worked on policy reforms in Congress to strengthen the rights of workers, women, and marginalized groups. The chapters of the acts of assembly referenced in the historical citation at the end of this section may not constitute a comprehensive list of such chapters and may exclude chapters whose provisions have expired. Before the amendments, victims of wage theft had to rely on breach of contract or a theory called quantum meruit for relief. Previously, only the Virginia Department of Labor and Industry could do so. The Wage & Hour Section (“the Section”) of the Division of Labor is responsible for investigating all matters under the authority of the Wage Payment & Collection Act (WPCA). All employers must establish regular pay periods. Definitions. J. Labor and Employment » Chapter 3. 21-5-2. Minimum wages Section Print PDF email Creating a Report: Check the sections you'd like to appear in the report, then use the "Create Report" button at the bottom of the page to generate your report. No. ARTICLE 4. Civil penalties owed under this section shall be paid to the Commissioner for deposit into the general fund of the State Treasurer. On March 10, 2020, Governor Ralph Northam signed into law an amendment to the Virginia Wage Payment Act (“WPA”) passed by the Virginia General Assembly, which will go into effect on July 1, 2020. §21-5 REQUIRES THE EMPLOYER TO: Pay employee wages at least twice a month, with no more than 19 days between paydays. H. Any employer who knowingly fails to make payment of wages in accordance with subsection A shall be subject to a civil penalty not to exceed $1,000 for each violation. In addition, the law prohibited an employer from making certain deductions from wages and limited an employer’s ability to reduce an employee’s compensation. The Virginia Minimum Wage Act does not, however, apply to all workers within the Commonwealth. However, these updates significantly increase potential penalties against employers who may not be properly paying their employees and create additional responsibilities for Virginia’s general contractors (GCs). These amendments under Virginia’s Wage Payment Act (“VWPA”) are the first of its kind and provide enhanced protections for employees who are victims of wage theft by creating a private cause of action for employees to sue their employers to recover unpaid wages owed. The Virginia governor last month signed a handful of bills related to wage theft, imposing stiff penalties for violations and creating new employee protections. 2. Once the report is generated you'll then have the option to download it as a pdf, print or email the report. 01/2018 - West Virginia Minimum Wage - Update includes new contact information, new logo, new revision date, and removal of old minimum wage information. If your current or former employer has stolen your wages or failed to pay you overtime, call our Virginia unpaid wages attorneys today at 571-288-1309 or submit an inquiry through our contact page. The Virginia Values Act (Senate Bill 868) amends the Virginia Human Rights Act (“VHRA”) to, among other things, add sexual orientation and gender identity as protected characteristics and … Coverage Virginia’s Minimum Wage Act is set forth in 40.1-28.8 through 40.1-28.12 of the Code of Virginia. The wage payment provisions of the WPCA address many issues relating to the … All such employers shall pay salaried employees at least once each month and employees paid on an hourly rate at least once every two weeks or twice in each month, except that (i) a student who is currently enrolled in a work-study program or its equivalent administered by any secondary school, institution of higher education, or trade school, and (ii) employees whose weekly wages total more than 150 percent of the average weekly wage of the Commonwealth as defined in § 65.2-500, upon agreement by each affected employee, may be paid once each month if the institution or employer so chooses.