California guards file complaint over unpaid wages

Many California residents may have woken up in the middle of the night to take advantage of Black Friday sales before the big holiday shopping rush. However, such shopping can take a toll on workers who have to endure the crazy hours and stress that comes with running an establishment full of shoppers for extended hours. Such is the case for a group of security guards who worked at a local Walmart the night of Thanksgiving. They are now seeking unpaid wages from their security company.

The workers claim they have not been paid any of the wages they were promised from last year's Black Friday. The group worked for 11 hours on Thanksgiving night and the company they were employed by promised to pay them at least $120. However, none of them have seen a dime of the promised wages.

It is said that 18 of the guards who worked that night have filed an unpaid wages claim against the company's owner. Reporters spoke to the owner who claimed they did not receive their paychecks because the managers failed to collect the employee's addresses. However, when reporters tried to reach the man again his number no longer worked. The employees had a July hearing at the California Labor Commissioner's office several months ago, but the company failed to show. However, the office sent one of the employees a letter stating that instead of the $120 he thought he was owed, he is actually due over $2,000 in damages and penalties from the company.

The downside of the positive judgment is that it could take years before they receive any of their unpaid wages. Fortunately they stepped up and fought for their legal rights. California employees in a situation similar to this one can fight to receive the money that is owed to them. Understanding one's legal rights can help them if they have to fight a company in court.

Source: KGET.com, "Contact 17: Black Friday security guards say they were never paid," Nov. 19, 2012

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