If I win in a wage claim at the Labor Commissioner and my employer doesn’t pay the amount awarded, what happens?
In CA, if the Labor Commissioner’s decision is in the employee’s favor (and includes a money award), and the employer doesn’t appeal, the Labor Commissioner will enter the decision as a judgment against the employer. Entering the decision as a judgment means that it can be enforced in
court. You may collect the judgment yourself or the DLSE can do it.
After the hearing, the Labor Commissioner ruled in Jane’s favor and the decision says that Jane’s employer must pay Jane for unpaid overtime wages. Jane’s employer still doesn’t pay Jane and doesn’t file and appeal to the decision. In this case, the Labor Commissioner will make the decision a judgment against the employer. This means that Jane’s employer must pay Jane and that, if it doesn’t, she or the DLSE can go to court to collect the amount owed under the decision. Jane may collect her lost overtime wages from her employer herself or have the Division of Labor Standards Enforcement collect them for her.