Commissioned employees frequently earn money in the form of bonuses, commissions, and other incentives. In some cases, however, the corporation does not pay the total amount owed. Sometimes the employee is fired, and the company refuses to pay any of the money owed to them.
All of these tactics are illegal. If you have been denied commissions owed to you for work you’ve completed, you may want to speak with a skilled wage and hour attorney. A St. Louis unpaid commissions lawyer could help determine whether you are entitled to compensation, including backpay.
Commissions are a type of payment given to workers or independent contractors in exchange for their services. Commissions may be calculated as a flat charge, a percentage of the transaction value, or as a performance standard, depending on the industry. Although verbal agreements can also be lawful and enforceable, the actual commission conditions are usually outlined in a legally binding, written contract.
However, in some cases, businesses may choose not to pay commissions or pay a reduced commission. While illegal, some businesses still do this because they know that suing the opposing party may be more expensive for the unpaid employee than simply accepting the loss.
In most cases, commissions are considered wages. However, simply receiving a percentage of a sum does not automatically qualify someone as a commission-based employee. A worker must be responsible for selling the goods or services that their pay is based on for their commissions to count as wages.
Under 29 United States Code Ch. 8, the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) protects employees who are not fairly compensated for work they have done. If an employee has not been paid commissions when they are due, they may collect any missed pay under the FLSA.
State law also protects employees. Under Missouri Revised Statutes §407.911, commissions require prompt payment. When a person’s employment contract expires, the employer owes them all the money they earned, commissions and otherwise.
Under MO Rev Stat §290.527, employers are responsible for paying their employees their due wages. These wages include commissions. A local court or jury may award twice the unpaid wages as liquidated damages, as well as legal costs and reasonable attorney fees.
Bringing a civil claim against the employer, however, may prove to be a daunting task. Obtaining counsel from a lawyer in the St. Louis area could make a substantial difference in a worker’s ability to collect their unpaid commissions.
If your employer failed to pay your commissions in full, you can benefit from the professional help and guidance of a St. Louis unpaid commissions lawyer. You may be entitled to compensation and liquidated damages for your employer’s refusal to pay. To schedule a consultation with one of our diligent team members, get in touch with our office now.