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(1) Filing Wage Theft Complaints.
(a) A proper party must allege a wage theft violation in which the unpaid wages are equal to or greater than the minimum threshold amount and equal to or less than the maximum threshold amount.
(b) A signed complaint for wage theft must be filed with the wage theft coordinator less than three years from the date the wage theft occurred. A wage theft complaint properly filed under this Section tolls the applicable statute of limitations for any action in state or federal court concerning a claim under this Chapter. 1237
(c) The complaint shall set forth the facts upon which it is based with sufficient specificity to identify the employer or employers and for the wage theft coordinator to determine both that an allegation of wage theft has been made and that the threshold amount has been met.
(d) Upon the filing of any complaint, the wage theft coordinator shall promptly determine whether the wage theft complaint alleges wage theft, names at least one employer, and meets the threshold amount criterion. 1238
(e) Upon making such determination, the wage theft coordinator shall serve the complaint and a written notice on the employer or employers charged with the commission of a wage theft practice, setting forth the allegations, rights and obligations of the parties. Such service shall be by personal service or certified mail.
(a) Each employer shall file an answer to the complaint with the wage theft coordinator not later than thirty (30) days after receipt of the complaint. Such answer shall include all available records of the hours worked by the complaining employee or employees, the amounts paid to those employees, and any credits or deductions that may have been lawfully taken.
(b) In its answer, an employer may admit liability for either part of or the entire amount in dispute.
(a) The wage theft coordinator shall have the power to subpoena records from any party to the complaint. Said records shall be returned to the wage theft coordinator within thirty (30) days after receipt of the subpoena.
(4) Standards for Resolving Factual Disputes. 1239
(a) In the event that there is a factual dispute as to whether wages are owed or the amount of wages that are owed, the complainant shall bear the burden of proof by a preponderance of the evidence.
(b) A complainant may meet the burden of proof by presenting sufficient evidence to show the amount of work performed, or the extent of work performed, and the amount of compensation due for the work performed, when:
(.1) The respondent employer has a legal obligation to keep records of an employee's hours worked and/or records of compensation provided to an employee; and
(.2) Such records are imprecise, inadequate or do not exist.
(c) Failure to provide any records by the employer or employers shall raise a rebuttable presumption that the wages complained of were not paid.
(d) An employer may present other evidence to negate the reasonableness of the inferences to be drawn from the complainant's evidence in (b), but the burden is on the employer to do so.
(5) Determination by Wage Theft Coordinator of Violation. 1240
(a) Within sixty (60) days of receipt of the Answer, or within 110 days of receipt of the Complaint, whichever is earlier, the wage theft coordinator shall issue a written determination regarding the Complaint. The determination shall include written findings.
(b) If wages are determined to be owed in violation of this Chapter, the wage theft coordinator shall order them paid. In addition, the wage theft coordinator shall make a determination as to penalties that may be warranted in connection with the matter.
(c) Payments in full must be made within sixty (60) days of the date of the order. The wage theft coordinator may allow a reasonable payment plan, not to exceed six (6) months in length, to be entered into by the parties upon good cause shown.
(d) Additionally, the wage theft coordinator shall periodically publish a list of the employers with current unpaid balances, and the amount of the unpaid balance.
(e) A final decision by the wage theft coordinator may be appealed within 30 days of such final decision to the Board of Labor Standards, for adjudication pursuant to the procedures established for the adjudication of complaints pursuant to subsection 17-107(7) of the Code (Contractors: Labor-Management Relationships; Board of Labor Standards) 1241 and any regulations established by the Board concerning procedures specific to claims under this Chapter.
(f) The determination of the wage theft coordinator as well as the complaint, answer, investigatory notes, and documents received shall be made available to any party for use in any appeal under subsection (e), above or further litigation of the matter.
Subsection (4)(e) deleted, Bill No. 171113 (approved March 6, 2018).
Enrolled bill provided an incorrect caption for Section 17-107(7); corrected by Code editor.