Officials Say Silicon Valley Firm’s Wage Theft Worse Than Sweatshops
A Silicon Valley firm has been penalized for wage theft involving eight Indian employees who were paid well below minimum wage.
According to a news report, the workers who were flown in from Electronics for Imaging Inc.’s Bangalore offices, worked up to 122 hours a week helping the company move its headquarters from Foster City to Fremont, Calif.
They were given no overtime for their work and were paid about $1.21 an hour, well below California’s $8 minimum wage.
While working in the United States, the company continued to pay them in Indian rupees.
An Unintentional Slip?
The Department of Labor launched an investigation after it received an anonymous tip. The company will pay more than $40,000 in back pay to the workers in addition to a $3,500 fine.
The company brought in $728 million in revenue last year and their CEO received a pay package valued at around $6 million.
The company defended its actions by saying that it brought a few IT employees from India for a “short assignment” in the U.S.
During this assignment, a spokeswoman said, the employees were paid their regular pay in India plus a “special bonus” for their efforts on this project.
The company stated that it “unintentionally overlooked” laws that require even foreign employees to be paid based on U.S. standards.
Wage Theft is a Serious Issue
Wage theft has become a serious problem not only in California, but also nationwide.
The most vulnerable to being victimized in this manner are minimum wage workers, especially immigrants, who don’t want to lose their jobs or face retaliation from their employers.
The problem seems to be on the rise as individual cities such as San Francisco have taken it upon themselves to increase the minimum wage in lieu of action from the U.S. Congress.
Our law firm represents those who have been victims of wage theft. We have filed class actions on behalf of these workers who look for justice and compensation for work they have done.
If you have not been paid your regular wage, wages for overtime worked or your last paycheck after you quit or were terminated, it constitutes wage theft. This is the money your employer owes you for work you performed.
Please contact an experienced California employment lawyer who has experience going after corporations that commit the crime of wage theft.