Illinois General Assembly - Full Text of HB4324
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Full Text of HB4324  100th General Assembly




HB4324 EngrossedLRB100 16834 JLS 31975 b

1    AN ACT concerning employment.
2    Be it enacted by the People of the State of Illinois,
3represented in the General Assembly:
4    Section 5. The Illinois Wage Payment and Collection Act is
5amended by changing Sections 11 and 14 and by adding Section
611.3 as follows:
7    (820 ILCS 115/11)  (from Ch. 48, par. 39m-11)
8    Sec. 11. It shall be the duty of the Department of Labor to
9inquire diligently for any violations of this Act, and to
10institute the actions for penalties herein provided, and to
11enforce generally the provisions of this Act.
12    An employee may file a complaint with the Department
13alleging violations of the Act by submitting a signed,
14completed wage claim application on the form provided by the
15Department and by submitting copies of all supporting
16documentation. Complaints shall be filed within one year after
17the wages, final compensation, or wage supplements were due.
18    Applications shall be reviewed by the Department to
19determine whether there is cause for investigation.
20    The Department shall have the following powers:
21        (a) To investigate and attempt equitably to adjust
22    controversies between employees and employers in respect
23    of wage claims arising under this Act and to that end the



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1    Department through the Director of Labor or any other
2    person in the Department of Labor designated by him or her,
3    shall have the power to administer oaths, subpoena and
4    examine witnesses, to issue subpoenas duces tecum
5    requiring the production of such books, papers, records and
6    documents as may be evidence of any matter under inquiry
7    and to examine and inspect the same as may relate to the
8    question in dispute. Service of such subpoenas shall be
9    made by any sheriff or any person. Any court in this State,
10    upon the application of the Department may compel
11    attendance of witnesses, the production of books and
12    papers, and the giving of testimony before the Department
13    by attachment for contempt or in any other way as the
14    production of evidence may be compelled before such court.
15        (b) To take assignments of wage claims in the name of
16    the Director of Labor and his or her successors in office
17    and prosecute actions for the collection of wages for
18    persons financially unable to prosecute such claims when in
19    the judgment of the Department such claims are valid and
20    enforceable in the courts. No court costs or any fees for
21    necessary process and proceedings shall be payable in
22    advance by the Department for prosecuting such actions. In
23    the event there is a judgment rendered against the
24    defendant, the court shall assess as part of such judgment
25    the costs of such proceeding. Upon collection of such
26    judgments the Department shall pay from the proceeds of



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1    such judgment such costs to such person who is by law
2    entitled to same. The Department may join in a single
3    proceeding any number of wage claims against the same
4    employer but the court shall have discretionary power to
5    order a severance or separate trial for hearings.
6        (c) To make complaint in any court of competent
7    jurisdiction of violations of this Act.
8        (d) In addition to the aforementioned powers, subject
9    to appropriation, the Department shall may establish an
10    administrative procedure to adjudicate claims and to issue
11    final and binding administrative decisions on such claims
12    subject to the Administrative Review Law within 30 days of
13    the claim. Any claim brought under this Section shall be
14    adjudicated within 30 days after it is filed unless
15    otherwise agreed by the parties. To establish such a
16    procedure, the Director of Labor or her or his authorized
17    representative may promulgate rules and regulations. The
18    adoption, amendment or rescission of rules and regulations
19    for such a procedure shall be in conformity with the
20    requirements of the Illinois Administrative Procedure Act.
21    Nothing herein shall be construed to prevent any employee
22from making complaint or prosecuting his or her own claim for
23wages. Any employee aggrieved by a violation of this Act or any
24rule adopted under this Act may file suit in circuit court of
25Illinois, in the county where the alleged violation occurred or
26where any employee who is party to the action resides, without



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1regard to exhaustion of any alternative administrative
2remedies provided in this Act. Actions may be brought by one or
3more employees for and on behalf of themselves and other
4employees similarly situated.
5    Nothing herein shall be construed to limit the authority of
6the State's attorney of any county to prosecute actions for
7violation of this Act or to enforce the provisions thereof
8independently and without specific direction of the Department
9of Labor.
10(Source: P.A. 98-527, eff. 1-1-14.)
11    (820 ILCS 115/11.3 new)
12    Sec. 11.3. Wage claim escrow. If, pursuant to Section 11,
13the Department of Labor determines there is cause for
14investigation, the Department shall request that no more than
1510% of the disputed wage claim be submitted by the employer to
16the Department and placed in an escrow account administered by
17the Department. Upon receiving the moneys, the Department shall
18provide written verification of the escrow amount received to
19both the employer and the claimant.
20    These moneys shall be held in escrow until the Department
21adjudicates the claim, but no longer than 45 days. If, upon the
22final and binding administrative decision or by the default of
23an employer for failing to respond to the complaint, the
24Department finds the employer is guilty of wage theft, the
25Department shall release the moneys to the claimant, and the



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1employer shall be liable for the remainder of the claim as
2adjudicated by the Department. If, upon the final and binding
3administrative decision, the Department finds the employer is
4not guilty of wage theft, the Department shall release the
5moneys to the employer.
6    The Department shall adopt rules for the administration of
7this Section.
8    (820 ILCS 115/14)  (from Ch. 48, par. 39m-14)
9    Sec. 14. (a) Any employee not timely paid wages, final
10compensation, or wage supplements by his or her employer as
11required by this Act shall be entitled to recover through a
12claim filed with the Department of Labor or in a civil action,
13but not both, the amount of any such underpayments and damages
14of 2% of the amount of any such underpayments for each month
15following the date of payment during which such underpayments
16remain unpaid. In a civil action, such employee shall also
17recover costs and all reasonable attorney's fees.
18    (a-5) In addition to the remedies provided in subsections
19(a), (b), and (c) of this Section, any employer or any agent of
20an employer, who, being able to pay wages, final compensation,
21or wage supplements and being under a duty to pay, wilfully
22refuses to pay as provided in this Act, or falsely denies the
23amount or validity thereof or that the same is due, with intent
24to secure for himself or other person any underpayment of such
25indebtedness or with intent to annoy, harass, oppress, hinder,



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1delay or defraud the person to whom such indebtedness is due,
2upon conviction, is guilty of:
3        (1) for unpaid wages, final compensation or wage
4    supplements in the amount of $5,000 or less, a Class B
5    misdemeanor; or
6        (2) for unpaid wages, final compensation or wage
7    supplements in the amount of more than $5,000, a Class A
8    misdemeanor.
9    Each day during which any violation of this Act continues
10shall constitute a separate and distinct offense.
11    Any employer or any agent of an employer who violates this
12Section of the Act a subsequent time within 2 years of a prior
13criminal conviction under this Section is guilty, upon
14conviction, of a Class 4 felony.
15    (b) Any employer who has been demanded or ordered by the
16Department or ordered by the court to pay wages, final
17compensation, or wage supplements due an employee shall be
18required to pay a non-waivable administrative fee to the
19Department of Labor in the amount of $500 $250 if the amount
20ordered by the Department as wages owed is $3,000 or less;
21$1,000 $500 if the amount ordered by the Department as wages
22owed is more than $3,000, but less than $10,000; and $2,000
23$1,000 if the amount ordered by the Department as wages owed is
24$10,000 or more. Any employer who has been so demanded or
25ordered by the Department or ordered by a court to pay such
26wages, final compensation, or wage supplements and who fails to



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1seek timely review of such a demand or order as provided for
2under this Act and who fails to comply within 15 calendar days
3after such demand or within 35 days of an administrative or
4court order is entered may be subject to a judgment lien placed
5on the employer's real estate pursuant to Section 12-101 of the
6Code of Civil Procedure, may be subject to a citation or
7supplementary proceeding to discover assets pursuant to
8Section 2-1402 of the Code of Civil Procedure, and shall also
9be liable to pay a penalty to the Department of Labor of 20% of
10the amount found owing and a penalty to the employee of 1% per
11calendar day of the amount found owing for each day of delay in
12paying such wages to the employee. All moneys recovered as fees
13and civil penalties under this Act, except those owing to the
14affected employee, shall be deposited into the Wage Theft
15Enforcement Fund, a special fund which is hereby created in the
16State treasury. Moneys in the Fund may be used only for
17enforcement of this Act.
18    (b-5) Penalties and fees under this Section may be assessed
19by the Department and recovered in a civil action brought by
20the Department in any circuit court or in any administrative
21adjudicative proceeding under this Act. In any such civil
22action or administrative adjudicative proceeding under this
23Act, the Department shall be represented by the Attorney
25    (c) Any employer, or any agent of an employer, who
26discharges or in any other manner discriminates against any



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1employee because that employee has made a complaint to his
2employer, to the Director of Labor or his authorized
3representative, in a public hearing, or to a community
4organization that he or she has not been paid in accordance
5with the provisions of this Act, or because that employee has
6caused to be instituted any proceeding under or related to this
7Act, or because that employee has testified or is about to
8testify in an investigation or proceeding under this Act, is
9guilty, upon conviction, of a Class C misdemeanor. An employee
10who has been unlawfully retaliated against shall be entitled to
11recover through a claim filed with the Department of Labor or
12in a civil action, but not both, all legal and equitable relief
13as may be appropriate. In a civil action, such employee shall
14also recover costs and all reasonable attorney's fees.
15(Source: P.A. 98-527, eff. 1-1-14.)