Montana Wage and Hour Investigations: What you need to know

Montana's commissioner of labor (or his or her authorized representative) may enter places of employment, question employees, and investigate relevant facts to determine whether an employer has violated the state's wage payment provisions. The commissioner has the authority to administer oaths, examine witnesses, and issue subpoenas to compel witnesses to attend a wage proceeding and to compel an employer to produce pertinent employment records, payrolls, and documents (MT Code Sec. 39-3-210).
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Payment of wages. Violating wage payment provisions is a misdemeanor and is punishable by a fine of up to 110 percent of the unpaid wages (MT Code Sec. 39-3-206). If an employee sues to recover unpaid wages, the court may also award costs reasonably incurred in connection with the lawsuit, including reasonable attorneys’ fees (MT Code Sec. 39-3-214).
Child labor. The labor department has the right at any time to enter a place of business that is subject to the state's child labor provisions and to inspect relevant employment records (MT Code Sec. 41-2-116). A violation is considered a misdemeanor, which is punishable by a fine, imprisonment, or both. Each day a violation continues is considered a separate offense, and the employment of each individual minor in violation of the law is also a separate offense (MT Code Sec. 41-2-118and MT Code Sec. 46-18-212).

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