Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Utah Wage Laws Favor Bad Employers, and Hurt Employees- HELP US!

While the country turns it's attention to the Wall St bailout, it is time for Utah to turn it's attention to the laws that allow these things to happen. With many of Utah's start up businesses and new companies financed not by profits, but instead by venture capitalists and loans from outside interests, many companies are suddenly facing going under. Many of these employers will choose to use the Utah code to their advantage and just walk away, never paying their employees. With our current code, employees may never see a dime.

This isn't just about Wall St or bad investments. This is about a bad law that protects employers, while doing nothing to protect employees. Say an employer decides it is in his or her best interest to walk away from the business and go find other employment, leaving the employees without a paycheck or employment. Utah actually protects the employer from having to pay the employee!

According to Utah Admin Code R610-3 Filing, Investigation, and Resolution of Wage Claims employers who fail to pay their employees are first sent a letter, and then sent another letter, and another, and another. Eventually, after 90 days, (assuming the Wage and Labor Commission moves quickly and efficiently), the claim gets moved to the Attorney General's Office, where, you guessed it, another letter is sent. Eventually, when these busy agencies have time, the case is moved to an arbitration and mediation court. It then takes about 5-8 months to get an appointment with that court. And if and when that magic day ever arrives, it will be determined that yes or no the employer owes the employee. If it is determined that in fact they do owe them wages, a lien is placed against the employer's assets.

How long does it take for that lien to produce anything for the long-suffering employee?
Utah Admin Code R610-3-14-2. The docketing of an Order shall constitute a lien against the real property of the defendant situated in the county for a period of eight years.

Yes, you read that right. An employee may have to wait EIGHT YEARS to get their wages! There is no “golden parachute” to help these employees who are suddenly both without a job and screwed out of their wages.
When we go to work we put our trust in our employers that they will provide for us in exchange for the labors we perform. We put our livelihood in their hands and rely on the fact that as long as we do our best, we will be paid, and in turn be able to provide for our families.
But Utah employers who get tired of running a business, or lose financing, or simply decide that there is more money to be made elsewhere can walk away from the business and the employees that depend on them, with little consequences.
This is not moral and this is not right! Employers should face criminal charges for running faulty businesses and failing to pay their employees. Men and women CEO's who chose to leave their businesses for higher paying salaries with other organization with no thoughts or cares to the employees they screw over in their wake should face public punishments, and not just inconvenient fines.

Utah, take a look closer at home and ask yourself if you will be protected if your employer goes under or walks away from the business. Will you be paid? Will you be prepared to wait eight years before seeing those wages? Will you be able to survive on unemployment at a fraction of your past earnings?

Don't just sit and watch Wall Street. Take action here at home. Let's change these laws that protect employers and not the employees. Let's make it criminal to not pay employees! Ask the state legislature candidates what they plan to do to protect employees. Challenge the law. Stand up and make it clear that we will not allow employees to be taken advantage of!

Help me and my former co-workers who have been so hurt by this law (having not received a cent of the money our past employer owes us, since July, and will probably never see our duly earned wages), by "Facebooking," Digging, bookmarking, linking, whatever it is you can do. Help us spread the word about this bad law, and bring attention to a subject that deserves notice. You don't have to be in Utah to help spread the word! But if you are in Utah, you can send a link to this article (or copy and paste it) to any of the candidates currently running for State Legislature. All of their names are RIGHT HERE.  


  1. Anonymous10:13 PM

    I'm not an employer but employers don't just walk away from profitable businesses. It's less about them being greedy than it is about them not making any money.

  2. That is true. But does an employer have the right to walk away from a company without paying the employees??

  3. Anonymous11:11 PM

    Actually, I think the eight year rule is worse than you think it is. If the employer does not settle the judgment or sell the lien encumbered property within eight years, the lien expires and the employee will never get paid.

    Just out of curiosity, why aren't you posting her name? When I do a google search on her I only get positive results. It seems like someone thats screws over a group of internet marketing gurus should expect to pay for it with her online reputation.

  4. I think the problem is more indicative of corruption within the Utah house than anything else. If I could encourage Utahans to do anything in November, it would be to vote out the incumbent. The fact that the chair of the house ethics committee is being investigated for bribery, and those hearings will be closed to the public, speaks volumes. I don't care what religion or party they belong to--as a group, they have proven that they cannot be trusted with power.

  5. As of right now we are choosing not to use her name (but you will notice I did link to her professional profile within the post), because we know her, and therefore, fear retribution. We know she will come back at us with some stupid slander or libel suit, which will never hold up, but will stall our claims that much longer.
    So for now, we focus on the law. We don't expect to ever see our money. But we can stop this from happening to other people!

  6. Anonymous7:55 AM


    Recently an insurance company nearly wind up....

    A bank is nearly bankrupt......filing chapter 11 protection.

    How it affect you? Did you buy insurance? Did you buy mini note or bonds?

    Who fault?

    They bailout trouble finance company, but they will not bail out your credit card bills……And the bill out of company is still not enough yet…….You got no choice, and no point pointing finger but you can prevent similar things from happen again……

    The top management of the Public listed company ( belong to "public" ) salary should be tied a portion of it to the shares price ( IPO or ave 5 years ).... so when the shares price drop, it don't just penalise the investors, but those who don't take care of the company.....If this rule is pass on, without any need of further regulation, all industries ( as long as it is public listed ) will be self regulated......because the top management will be concern about their own pay check…… And they are still spend big money on hotel stay and luxury function……..

    Meanwhile if company was being acquired, there will be a great movement in terms of staff……eventually staff suffer also.

    Are you a partisan?

    Sign a petition to your favourite president candidate, congress member, House of representative again and ask for their views to not just comment on this, and what regulations they are going to commit and implementation the regulation, I believe should vote for the one who come suggest good implementation and let’s see who back up, which don’t implement after just mentioning in the election campaign.....If you agree on my point, please share with many people as possible.... Finance and Media are the two only industries can shaken politics ( Maybe Hackers can ), please help to highlight also...


    Facebook, come and join as a friend and share with your friends…..

  7. Anonymous1:23 PM

    I hate to say it, but Utah is the most corrupt business environment I have ever encountered in my 25 years of involvement in technology companies across the entire nation. Both the venture capitalists and the corporate management types seem ready to go to excessive lengths to prove that Utah's reputation for conservative Judeo-Christian morals and values does not extend to the business arena and will not interfere with their ability to 'play hardball'; consequently, they behave in extremely unethical (if not downright illegal) ways whenever the opportunity to assert their business acumen occurs. This appears to be deeply ingrained in the business culture and perpetuated by the kind of laws and legal procedures you are encountering. I'm afraid you will have quite an uphill battle to try to change this.

  8. Anonymous2:48 AM

    Somebody once said, "You can't put new wine in old bottles... you better forget about it!"
    When the local government is corrupt, but not as corrupt as the national government - time for new bottles. No amount of voting old trash out to put new trash in is going to make any difference.
    Don't believe me? Ask the Master.

  9. Anonymous11:58 PM

    The Blue Collar Worker In America Is Getting Shafted Daily.

    My Sentinel Property Management in Riverton Utah did just this to me. I am in a continuous loop trying to get unpaid wages for 2 weeks work as well as a loop with the Federal Labor And Wage for 160 Hours of unpaid overtime.

    I was forced off UDOT property in 3 days after termination from 2 years employment as the Tiefork Rest Area Caretaker. All because I started opening my mouth regarding MSPM not paying and the corruption between UDOT building a rest area that would cost tax payers for years in repairs from shoddy building and the buddy system.

    After being threatened with arrest for trespassing we got railroaded in a few weeks while moving through the employment compensation claim and appeal process. All because the employer knew the system and it is geared toward helping the employer weasel out through loopholes.

    This corruption needs to stop, politicians getting paid off to favor illegal immigrants and cheap scum bag employers.


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