North Carolina Wage and Hour Investigations: What you need to know

North Carolina's commissioner of labor (or his or her authorized representative) may enter any place of employment to determine whether the employer is covered by the state Wage and Hour Act. If the employer is covered, then the commissioner has the authority to inspect and make transcriptions of related records and to question employees to determine whether the employer is in compliance with wage and hour provisions.
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However, in order to investigate a violation of wage payment provisions, the commissioner must have received a complaint from an employee at that place of business, and then the commissioner may only investigate that specific complaint (NC Gen. Stat. Sec. 95-25.15).
Every employer subject to the wage and hour provisions must make and keep records of each employee's ages, wages paid, and hours worked (NC Gen. Stat. Sec. 95-25.15). The labor commissioner may inspect the employer's premises and records, make copies of records, question employees, and investigate the facts and the employer's practices to determine whether the employer is in violation of the law.
Violators are subject to a civil penalty of up to $250 per employee, with a maximum of $2,000 per investigation. The amount of the penalty will be determined by the size of the business and the gravity of the violation (NC Gen. Stat. Sec. 95-25.23A).
The commissioner may administer oaths, issue subpoenas, and compel the attendance of witnesses and the production of wage-related documents in any related proceeding (NC Gen. Stat. Sec. 95-25-16).
An employer that violates minimum wage, overtime, or wage payment provisions must pay the affected employee the amount of unpaid wages plus interest, costs, and reasonable ...

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