There’s an occasional problem with people who work with temp agencies not getting paid for their work. This creates a deep distrust of staffing agencies as a whole. People may desperately need a job and may know that working with a temp agency will help them find work fast, but if you’re worried that you’re going to put in the hours only to never get paid for them… It’s only natural for people to be reluctant to turn to a temp agency in times of need.
So, is this even legal? Can a temp agency simply not pay you for the hours you work?
In a word, no. Temp agencies cannot refuse to pay you for the hours you’ve worked. Here’s what you need to know about why this is such a commonly talked about problem, why it’s illegal for a temp agency to refuse to pay you, and what you can do if a temp agency doesn’t pay you for the work you did.
Why Is It So Commonly Said Not To Trust Temp Agencies?
Bad apples reflect horribly on the entire industry. Unfortunately, there are indeed staffing agencies out there that don’t pay people for the hours they worked. Make no mistake: what they’re doing is illegal. Those horror stories that your friend told you about that time they worked with a staffing agency and never got paid? They should never have happened.
Staffing agencies are an excellent way to find temporary employment. They can be a lifesaver to those who desperately need a job – and now- as well as to those looking to supplement their income or to explore new careers. Many staffing agencies exist in order to help you do just that. They also help the companies who need some extra sets of hands, but not for long enough to justify expanding their permanent team.
Is It Illegal For A Staffing Agency To Refuse To Pay You?
Yes! Under the federal Fair Labor Standards Act, employers cannot refuse to pay wages for time worked. You are legally entitled to the wages that were promised to you for your services. Should a staffing agency refuse to pay you, they are in violation of the law. You could be entitled to additional benefits if a staffing agency refuses to pay you your rightfully earned wages.
What Do You Do If A Staffing Agency Refuses To Pay You?
There are a few courses of action you can take here. The most drastic is to lawyer up, but that doesn’t necessarily need to be your first step. If you’re concerned about the costs of hiring a lawyer in order to ensure that you get paid what you’re due, there are a few other steps you can take first.
In an ideal world, you would never have to worry about this situation, but whether or not a temp agency can refuse to pay you is one of the most commonly asked questions about temp agencies for a reason: it does happen from time to time.
So, should the worst happen and you do experience this, here are some of the things that you can do.
- Check the employment agreement. There may be certain conditions that address why you have not received your pay. For instance, you may need to go pick up your check in person, you may need to return equipment, or there may have been a holiday that defers the time of your payment.
- Contact the staffing agency. Mistakes can happen. If you did not get paid, you can contact human resources about it.
- Check your union contract. If you are part of a union, it may address pay issues and have requirements for actions you need to take. A union rep can help you in this regard.
- Research laws. State laws can vary depending on how long an employer can take to pay you.
- Contact the Department of Labor. You can report the staffing agency to the Department of Labor and receive assistance in collecting your wages.
- Contact the State Labor Department. They can provide you with a complaint form and help you receive your wages once the form has been processed.
- Check with a legal organization or clinic. These can help you, often at no charge.
- Consult with a lawyer. They can give you more personalized attention and go over the potential of filing a lawsuit against the staffing agency with you.
- File a small claims case. If you don’t wish to file a lawsuit, you can file a small claims case.
A Temp Agency You Can Trust
All Trades Staffing Services is here to help you find work. Whether you are looking for temp jobs or you’re hoping that a temporary position will lead to full-time employment, we take pride in connecting people with job opportunities – and obviously paying them for the work they do! If you would like to work with a trustworthy staffing agency, please do not hesitate to contact us today! We are here for you.