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Maine Wage and Hour Investigations: What you need to know

Employers covered by Maine's minimum wage laws must keep employment records, including the hours worked and wages paid to each employee, for at least 3 years. The employer is obligated to admit the director of the Bureau of Labor Standards (or his or her authorized representative) to the place of employment and to allow the director to inspect and copy those employment records. Employers must give each employee a statement with his or her paycheck that shows the date of the pay period, the hours, total earnings, and itemized deductions (ME Rev. Stat. Tit. 26 Sec. 665).
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Penalties for minimum wage violations. An employer that violates the state's minimum wage laws, or discharges or discriminates against any employee because the employee filed a minimum wage complaint, must be fined from $50 to $200 (ME Rev. Stat. Tit. 26 Sec. 671). In addition, a court may order the employer to pay double the amount of wages due and costs, including reasonable attorney's fees (ME Rev. Stat. Tit. 26 Sec. 670).
Exception. In the case of an overtime wage violation involving a state employee, a court may only award the amount of unpaid overtime pay--not additional damages or attorney's fees (ME Rev. Stat. Tit. 26 Sec. 670-A).
Other penalties. A fine of $100 to $500 applies for violation of the following provisions (ME Rev. Stat. Tit. 26 Sec. 602 and ME Rev. Stat. Tit. 26 Sec. 626-A):
• Hours of employment
• Timely payment of wages
• Recordkeeping requirements
• Payment of wages upon termination or resignation
• Equal pay
• Employee health benefits
For all of those violations, except hours of employment, a court may order an employer to pay health benefits; a reasonable rate of interest; costs, including a reasonable ...

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Record retention is complex and time consuming. However, in addition to complying with various federal and state laws, keeping good, well-organized records can be very helpful in documenting and supporting an organization’s employment actions.
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