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Azadian Law Group
August 10, 2016

New California Law Empowers Local Authorities to Investigate Wage Theft

A wage theft enforcement bill that will empower local California authorities to investigate wage theft claims has recently been signed into law by Governor Jerry Brown. This bill (SB 1342), authored by Senator Tony Mendoza (Artesia), will allow county and municipal boards to appoint an official to investigate allegations of wage theft.

Taking effect on January 1, 2017, this law will effective strengthen the enforcement arm of the California Division of Labor Standards Enforcement (DSLE), which is currently the agency that handles these claims.

As the text of SB 1342 explains, this expansion of enforcement authority has been spurred, at least in part, by findings that “wage enforcement resources in California have not kept pace with increases in the number of employers and increased complexities of the employer-employee relationship.”

Via this new law, the goal is to promote honest pay for fair work providing local agencies with all of the tools necessary to successfully investigate wage theft claims – and to recover unpaid back wages for hardworking Californians who have been the targets of employers’ wage and hour violations.

Commenting on this bill and new law, Senator Mendoza has noted that:

This bill protects hard-working Californians by clarifying the ability of cities and counties to investigate non-compliance with local wage laws…As cities and counties in California move to raise the minimum wage, we must ensure that our low-wage workers, who already face many challenges, receive the pay that they have earned.

The Facts about Wage Theft in Los Angeles County

Elucidating the importance of this new law, the following points out some of the latest facts and findings regarding wage theft in California:

  • Every week in Los Angeles County, workers are robbed of roughly $26.6 million in wages. This has led to Los Angeles being deemed the wage theft capital of the U.S.
  • Nearly 1 in every 3 low-wage workers in Los Angeles County is being paid less than minimum wage.
  • Nearly 90 percent of workers in Los Angeles County have experienced (or will experience) some type of wage theft over the course of their career/professional life.
  • Although wage theft can impact any worker, it tends to be more prevalent among low-wage workers, as well as immigrant employees, in Los Angeles (and throughout the state of California).

What do you think about this new law and legislators’ efforts to stop wage theft in California? Share your opinions with us on Facebook.

Experienced Help Fighting Wage Theft: Contact a Los Angeles Employment Law Attorney at the Azadian Law Group, PC

If you have been the target of an employer’s wage and hour violations, contact a Los Angeles employment law attorney at the Azadian Law Group, PC for a free case to review to find out more about your options for recovery and justice.

At the Azadian Law Group, PC, our lawyers exclusively represent employees – we never represent employers. This means that our attorneys have the knowledge, insight and resources necessary to effectively represent our clients in any legal setting and bring their cases to favorable resolutions.

Call us at 626-449-4944 or send us an email via this contact form to find out more about how we can help you. If you choose to move forward with us, you will not have to pay us any legal fees until or unless compensation is secured for your case.

From offices based in Pasadena, our attorneys provide exceptional legal service and representation to people throughout Los Angeles County, Riverside County, San Bernardino County, San Diego County and the state of California.



The following presents an overview of the broad range of employment law cases that our employment law attorneys are experienced at overseeing and favorably resolving.
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