Benefits can be any form of compensation that your employer promises to give you in exchange for your labor. A benefit is typically a wage or salary, but it also includes 401(k) matching, medical insurance, company car, company house, bonuses, reimbursed tuition and many other alternative forms of benefits. Employers can be sneaky. Your boss has other bosses that he answers to, whether that is a vice president, shareholders, investors or banks. Sometimes he manages this through efficient management and sustainable business growth, other times a boss will cut corners and take advantage of his employees.
There are three sources for which you can seek relief for unpaid benefits that you can draw upon: the federal Fair Labor Standards Act, state law and the employee handbook. Consulting with an experienced employment law attorney well-versed in these areas of litigation may go a long way toward securing your unpaid benefits. The FLSA set minimum wage requirements and overtime requirements. Similarly, state law probably sets minimum wage and overtime requirements.
Under either law, you may be able to recover unpaid wages. The way your attorney would establish this is by comparing your pay stubs to the number of hours worked and run that through the language in these statutes. For example, if you worked over 48 hours a week then under the FLSA you are typically entitled to eight hours of overtime pay.
Assuming your employer provides an employee handbook, your attorney would review the language in the handbook to ensure that your boss complied with its provisions. If your employer provides a handbook, then that is a binding contract between both of you.
Your unpaid benefits claim implicates contract law, federal and state law, regulatory rules and more. An experienced attorney could look over the conditions of your employment to which your employer has committed. From that point, he or should could work toward coming to a satisfactory resolution.