The N.C. Department of Labor does not take wage payment complaints of $50
or less. If your wage complaint deals with last
paycheck, you must
wait 10 days after the
payday in order to file
a complaint with this
The Wage and Hour Bureau is responsible for enforcement of the N.C. Wage and Hour Act, Controlled Substance Examination Regulation Act, Private Personnel Services Act, and the Job Listing Services Act. The bureau uses a combination of education and outreach efforts and regulatory investigations to ensure compliance with these laws.
The Wage and Hour Act includes employee protection for minimum wage and overtime payments, payment of promised wages not normally covered by law, youth employment, and recordkeeping. The minimum wage, overtime and youth employment provisions generally parallel the federal Fair Labor Standards Act and apply to all businesses whose annual dollar volume is under $500,000. The minimum wage rate is currently $7.25 an hour in North Carolina.
Overtime is based on hours actually worked in a workweek and is generally paid for hours in excess of 40. Some exceptions and alternate methods of calculation are allowed. Written notification of promised wages, including changes, is required.
Youth employment certificates are required for all youth under the age of 18. Restrictions on hours of work and occupations apply to youths under 18. Some exemptions are allowed for public sector, domestic and agricultural employers.
The Controlled Substance Examination Act sets procedural standards that employers must follow when conducting drug testing of applicants and employees. The act does not protect employees from adverse actions taken by employers as a result of test results.
The Wage and Hour Bureau also accepts complaints against employers regarding alleged violations of N.C. Gen. Stat. § 15A-153(c). This law states that “an employer shall not, in any application, interview, or otherwise, require an applicant for employment to disclose information concerning any arrest, criminal charge, or criminal conviction of the applicant that has been expunged and shall not knowingly and willingly inquire about any arrest, charge, or conviction that they know to have been expunged.” This law does not apply to state or local law enforcement agencies authorized pursuant to N.C. Gen. Stat. § 15A-151 to obtain confidential information for employment purposes. This law applies to alleged violations that occur on or after Dec. 1, 2013.