help needed - wage theft in New York

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888's picture
Joined: 30-09-03
Sep 10 2010 22:34
help needed - wage theft in New York

Hi everyone,

A friend of mine who moved to new york city had $2000 of wages not paid to her - are there any groups in New York who might be able to help? Like workers centers or IWW, etc... or even just legal advice contacts. Please let me know ASAP.

my ex-boss from a small non-profit that i worked with never paid me (about $2000-$2500), and i'm pretty sure he's done this before. i feel really betrayed because i thought we developed a close relationship in our time working together. not only did he not pay me, he is creating lies about me, insulting my work ethic, accusing me of being "unprofessional," just to make himself seem like he's in the right. i worked my ass off for him though. i used to get 2 hours of sleep a night in that time, challenged myself so much, constantly researching and brainstorming new ideas for him, hiring people, cold-calling, updating their website, emailing, networking, utlizing my connections for him...i'm so angry right now.

i know my case is weak bc i don't have real paperwork to prove that i was an employee and they changed my email account password that i had with them that would prove the work that i did. plus, i worked mostly from home, so no "coworkers" to vouch for me. i do have other witnesses though and still have contact information of clients/sponsors that we worked with.

i heard from a friend that dept of labor will pay a lawyer to represent me. i tried to contact them about this but they wont give a straight answer. i tried calling hotlines. they lead me nowhere. i feel at a loss. i just want a lawyer's advice about what to do. even if i don't end up winning this case, it's just not right that this guy does this. he's done it before and he's doing it again for sure. i even suspect that the whole non-profit organization is a scam and they don't even raise money for their cause (fighting cancer)

any help you can give me would be an immense help.

Thieving company details:

Fashion Fights Cancer
8/10 West 36th Street
8th Floor
New York, New York 10018

OliverTwister's picture
Joined: 10-10-05
Sep 11 2010 02:56
New York City GMB

General Membership Branch

* Mail - PO Box 7430, JAF Station, New York, NY 10116
* E-Mail -
* Online Newsletter -

I know that various IWW branches have successfully picketed businesses over unpaid wages - reading about such a picket in Chicago is part of what brought me into the union a few years ago.

That may not work as well with a charity that does not rely on walk-in customers, but the NYC GMB has a lot of experience with media campaigns, which could pressure a charity a lot, as well as with the NLRB process (including its many pitfalls).

Good luck to your friend!

Nate's picture
Joined: 16-12-05
Sep 11 2010 04:26

IWW's a good idea. Also showing up in person at the Dept of Labor's Wage and Hour division can't hurt. in person, though, not phone.

Joined: 9-06-09
Sep 11 2010 04:28

If your friend doesn't get anywhere - which is a good chance (or bad one, more like) - carefully planned revenge is better than keeping all that anger in. It won't get her/him the money but it'll reduce the probability of developing some unpleasant illness that bitterness tends to do to you - maybe even prove that fighting "Fashion Fights Cancer" fights cancer.

Mike Harman
Joined: 7-02-06
Sep 11 2010 12:32


Joined: 13-10-05
Sep 11 2010 17:38, specifically: (there may be a geographic restriction, don't know for sure)

Nate's picture
Joined: 16-12-05
Sep 25 2010 03:43

hey again, just wanted to reiterate - your friend should go in person to the office of the Wage and Hour Division of teh Department of Labor. They should bring whatever physical proof they have that they were an employee and go in person. I used google maps to find the office closest to that address for the company, I found this -
52 Duane St # 26
New York, NY 10007-1207
(212) 264-8185

Very generally, the way these sorts of agencies work is that they first have an investigative function. Your friend will have a conversation to start that function out.. Depending on the results of the investigation, the agency then becomes the lawyer for the person making a claim. This is of coruse not as satisfying as a real fight, but with the amount of money involved, your friend should try all options. It may not work out but all it will cost your friend is time.

Chilli Sauce's picture
Chilli Sauce
Joined: 5-10-07
Sep 25 2010 11:24

Yeah, def contact the NYC GMB (I've got direct e-mail contacts if you need them, just PM me). Also, part of the Madison branch's strategy is to organize around wage theft. They've done some research and have info/pamphlets. PM me for that info as well if needed.