Virginia Wage Law
The basic rules for the payment and timing of wages in Virginia is governed by Virginia Code Section 40.1-29. In particular:
*Additional rules pertain to overtime and minimum wage laws.
As recently amended, The Virginia Wage Statute now contains a private cause of action that allows you to bring a direct civil action in court to recover double or triple damages and attorney fees. This private cause of action represents a significant enhancement of prior remedies to recover unpaid wages, which traditionally had been limited to simple contract law. Under the new amendments, employees can now pursue unpaid wage claims in court and recover the full amount owed in additional to their attorney fees. If your prior employer has not paid your final wages by you next regular pay date or asserts an unauthorized deduction to avoid payment, you should consult with an attorney to determine the proper course of action.
If you do not wish to proceed directly with court action, Employees also can file administrative complaints with the Virginia Department of Labor and Industry.
Virginia also recently passed a new law regarding employee misclassification, aimed at cracking down on employers who classify their workers as independent contractors instead of employees. Under the new law, an individual who performs services for a person for payment shall be presumed to be an employee unless it is shown that the individual is an independent contractor as determined under the IRS guidelines. IRS considerations incluude whether a worker is free from control and direction, performs work that is outside the usual course of the employer's business, and is customarily engaged in an independently established trade, occupation, profession, or business.
The intent of the law is to ensure that workers receive the benefits and protections that are afforded to employees, such as minimum wage and overtime pay, workers' compensation, and unemployment insurance. Misclassified individuals may bring a civil action for individual damages in the amount of any wages, salary, employment benefits, including expenses incurred by the employee that would otherwise have been covered by insurance, or other compensation lost to the individual