Receiving a regular paycheck for your hard work is something you probably take for granted. You put in the hours, and you expect your employer to pay you the agreed-upon wage. But what if something does not seem right? What if you start noticing that the numbers do not add up, and you suspect your employer might be skimming from your paychecks?
In Illinois, laws exist to protect employees from wage theft. Yet, despite these laws, some employers might engage in unethical practices, reducing the pay you should get. Recognizing the signs of this behavior is the first step in addressing the issue.
Understand your pay and deductions
Your paycheck consists of your gross pay minus various legal deductions, such as taxes, social security and possibly health insurance or retirement contributions. It is essential to understand what these deductions are and how your employer calculates them to recognize if something does not seem right.
Signs of skimming
If your paychecks consistently seem lower than they should be, there might be a problem. Here are some signs that your employer might be skimming from your paychecks:
- Incorrect hours: If your employer records fewer hours than you have actually worked, this can reduce your pay. Double-check the hours listed on your pay stub.
- Unexplained deductions: Any deductions from your pay should be clearly explained on your pay stub. If there are deductions you do not understand, that might be a sign of a problem.
- Inconsistent pay: If your pay fluctuates widely without a clear reason, such as different numbers of hours worked, this might be a sign of skimming.
It is essential to trust your instincts in these matters. If something does not feel right with your paychecks, do not ignore it. Pay close attention to the details, and keep a record of your hours worked and any communication with your employer regarding pay. This can provide vital evidence if you need to take further action.
What to do if you suspect skimming
If you suspect that your employer has been skimming from your paychecks, take action to address the situation. Start by discussing the issue with your employer. It might simply be a misunderstanding or error that they can correct.
If talking to your employer does not resolve the issue, you can contact the Illinois Department of Labor. They can provide guidance and assistance in resolving the problem.
You have the right to receive the full pay you have earned for your work. If you suspect your Illinois employer has been skimming from your paychecks, knowing what steps to take can help you address the issue. By being proactive and taking action, you can ensure that you receive the pay you rightfully deserve.