Experienced, Effective And Always Empathetic

Stats show corporations steal more than anyone else

On Behalf of | Mar 6, 2023 | Wage & Hour

When most people think about theft, they will consider petty theft from stores, such as shoplifting, or theft carried out during a burglary or a home invasion. They may imagine someone rolling a cart of items out of the local Walmart, for instance, or breaking into a home while the family is gone on vacation. They think that these are the most common types of theft in the United States.

It is true that these things happen, but the misconception is that these are the most common types of theft, or even the most problematic ones. What statistics tell us is that wage theft, carried out by companies and corporations, is vastly more common. The toll has been set at around $15 billion annually, just in lost wages. This is more than the combination of all other types of theft, including major categories like car theft. Even combining them all together, corporations are still stealing more money from their own workers every single year.

Theft happens in a multitude of ways

A big reason why wage theft is so common is that it can happen in numerous different ways. Maybe an employer creates a mandatory tip pool and then cuts themself in, taking a portion of the tips from their workers. Maybe an employee works some overtime hours but then is only paid at their standard rate, meaning they lose out on some of the pay they earned.

In many cases, employees only lose a small amount of money and may not know what recourse they have, so a lot of this wage theft goes unreported. But it is still the biggest form of theft in the United States, and that is even when considering that the amount of reported theft is likely far lower than the real total.

For example, say that you work overtime and your boss offers to let you take time off the next week to make up for it. But if they give you the same amount of hours off that you worked, that is only the same as your standard pay rate. You’re still not being paid time and a half, or you would need more hours off than you worked initially – 1.5 hours off for every hour. Many workers agree to something like this without even realizing that they are effectively being robbed by their employer.

If you do believe something like this has happened to you, it can be very frustrating and hard to know what steps to take. It may help to work with an experienced team that has gone through cases like this in the past.