How to Report a Business for Not Paying Wages

The U.S. Department of Labor is the agency charged with investigation of wage complaints. The Wage and Hour Division receives the complaint and investigates your charges. The DOL has the authority to demand records from your employer, interview employees and to arbitrate a settlement. If necessary, the DOL will file suit against the employer at no cost to you to recover your lost wages and to assess any penalties allowed.

Go to the DOL website to find your local office. Go to the box located on the left hand side of the home page entitled "Browse by Topic." At the bottom of the box, click on the link entitled "Location." Find your state on the map presented on the page entitled "DOL Services by Location." Click on the state or scroll down and click on the state's name. You are presented with a list of DOL services in your state. Click on the link entitled "Wage & Hour Division District Office Locations."

Determine which office is closest to your location, if there are multiple offices in your state. Call the numbers listed. Leave your name, phone number and a short reason for your call if it is answered by voicemail, otherwise answer the questions of the person who answered the phone. Within 24 to 48 hours, a processor will call you to discuss your complaint. If the DOL has no regulatory authority over your complaint, they will tell you and refer you to another agency.

Gather any information the claims processor requests. Direct the processor to either mail or fax the form that you must complete and sign. It authorizes the DOL to access your work records in the course of their investigation. Complete and sign the form, forward the form and any documents requested to the address or fax number on the form's instructions.

Watch the mail. Within approximately two weeks, you will be notified of the status of your complaint. If your complaint is accepted, you will be assigned an investigator who will contact you by phone. You will receive a letter in the mail notifying you of the investigator's name and contact information.