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Bill Detail: HB19-1267

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Title Penalties For Failure To Pay Wages
Status Senate Third Reading Passed - No Amendments (04/24/2019)
Bill Subjects
  • Business & Economic Development
  • Crimes, Corrections, & Enforcement
House Sponsors J. Singer (D)
M. Froelich (D)
Senate Sponsors J. Danielson (D)
R. Rodriguez (D)
House Committee Judiciary
Senate Committee Health and Human Services
Date Introduced 03/25/2019
Description

Under existing law, an employer who willfully refuses to pay a
wage claim, or falsely denies the amount of a wage claim, or the validity
thereof, or that the same is due, with intent to secure any discount or

underpayment of such unpaid wage or with intent to annoy, harass,
oppress, hinder, delay, or defraud the person who is owed wages (wage
theft), is guilty of a misdemeanor.
The bill prohibits wage theft with the intent to coerce a person who
is owed wages. The bill defines wage theft as theft, which is a felony
when the theft is of an amount greater than $2,000.
The bill removes the exemption from criminal penalties for an
employer who is unable to pay wages or compensation because of a
chapter 7 bankruptcy action or other court action resulting in the
employer having limited control over his or her assets. The bill includes
in the definition of employee any person who performs work that is an
integral part of the employer's business and includes in the definition of
employer foreign labor contractors, officers or agents of an employer
entity, and any person acting directly or indirectly in the interest of an
employer in relation to an employee.
Under existing law, an employer who pays an employee a wage
less than the minimum wage is guilty of a misdemeanor. Under the bill,
a person who willfully pays a wage less than the minimum commits theft,
which is a felony when the theft is of an amount greater than $2,000.

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