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Time Cards and Back Wages Oregon

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  • Time Cards and Back Wages Oregon

    At my place of work, we are required to be at work ten minutes early. We discovered after about a year that our employer had not been paying us for the ten minutes. Additionally, if we were required to stay after out shift to complete assigned duties, we were not being paid for that time, either.

    We have requested copies of our time cards in order to figure out if we are owed any back wages and have been denied. We were told we could pay ($3-$5 per time card) the payroll company for copies of our pay stubs (which wouldn't work to accomplish a back wages dispute, anyway). Our employer had admitted he has copies of our time cards, but has refused to provide them for us.

    Is an employer required to produce past time cards at the request of an employee? Is it legal to charge the employees a fee for the time spent retrieving them?

  • #2
    Maybe. Maybe not. That would be a very state law specific type of question, and your state is not my state. You could contact BOLI (OR DOL) to be sure.

    Alternatively, if you are sure about the 10 minutes each day, just file for that. Maybe 15 minutes a day under the FLSA rounding rules. Force the employer to take rounding off the table. The employer would have to submit timesheets to disprove your claims. So arguably you end up at the same place as if you got the copies. And you force the employer to do your leg work for you.

    Past that, just start keeping your own time accounting records at home. A pen and paper notebook works great. Arguably any non-exempt employee should be doing this anyhow, at least until they proof their check. If you have say 30 days of your pen and paper notes backing up your position, you can then argue that was true then, was true before. Burden of proof is on the employer to show otherwise. If is legal (and common) in many states for the employer to simply refuse access to the records at all without a court order. You do not need copies of the records to file the wage claim.
    "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away".
    Philip K. **** (1928-1982)

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    • #3
      http://www.oregon.gov:80/BOLI/WHD/W_Whhowinf.shtml
      Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. Leo Buscaglia

      Live in peace with animals. Animals bring love to our hearts and warmth to our souls.

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      • #4
        In a recent self audit that was requested by the DOL I had to accumulate the hours worked, but was not required to produce time sheets to the DOL or to the employee.

        One employee wanted me to provide him with detailed explanations of my findings. I could have done so, but honestly after spending approximately 90 days (non-stop) of doing research I was tired! My boss instructed me to only provide what the law required, which in this case was nothing.

        I contacted DOL and they told me the same. Ultimately it is the employee responsibility to keep their paystubs and time clock records themselves.

        My advice is stop throwing away your paystub, it can be a necessary piece of evidence later on.
        Not everything in America is actionable in a court of law. Please remember that attorneys are in business for profit, and they get paid regardless of whether or not you win or lose.

        I offer my knowledge and experience at no charge, I admit that I am NOT infallible, I am wrong sometimes, hopefully another responder will correct me if that is the case with the answer above, regardless, it is your responsibility to verify any and all information provided.

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