Restitution Stories

Three Denver workers receiving restitution checks from Auditor O'Brien and two members of Denver Labor.

Read below some of our returned wage stories from 2020 and 2021. 

$270k Recovered for Airport Workers

Denver Labor was contacted by an employee who had concerns about his fringe benefits. After conducting an investigation, which included meeting with the employer and union, a labor analyst was able to identify a significant underpayment to workers at Denver’s airport, including the need for $270,000 in restitution to a union pension plan. The investigation was highly cooperative, and all parties are working together to ensure payment of the restitution.

Denver Labor Recovers Wages for Misclassified Employees

A contractor installing a solar system at the Denver International Airport misclassified their employees as Roofers vs. Electricians. We worked with the employer to examine records and recovered $9,575.22 in total restitution payment to seven employees.

Denver Labor Works with Contractor to Get Correct Payment

After failing to submit certified payroll for nine months, an asphalt company submitted the proper documents. We found the contractor underpaid seven employees by more than a total of $18,000. Initially, the contractor calculated the restitution owed as greater than the actual amount due. But our office worked with the contractor to calculate the correct amount so they could pay the actual restitution owed.

Denver Prevailing Wage Preserves Fringe Benefit Rules

A company installing solar panels on a roof failed to pay the correct fringe benefit amounts into their employees’ 401(k) plans, resulting in a $2,200 total underpayment for 10 employees. Any fringe benefits claimed by a contractor must be approved and validated by Denver Prevailing Wage.

More than $100K Collected for Airport Workers

Our office received notice of a solar panel installation project, which began in January 2019, at Denver International Airport from employees completing the work. Upon further investigation, we discovered the contractor had not submitted certified payrolls for the work performed. The contractor was then notified and required to submit certified payrolls.

After the submission, our analysts determined not all employees were reported and the majority of the employees were misclassified according to prevailing wage and paid as “laborers,” as opposed to “electricians.” In March 2020, our team collected restitution for 62 employees totaling $104,350.  

Worker Receives Almost $2,000 in Owed Wages

A large earth-moving contractor employing power equipment operators and laborers paid more than $15,000 in total restitution to 37 employees. Our analysts determined the company was claiming unapproved fringe benefits, resulting in a failure to meet prevailing wage requirements. One trackhoe operator received almost $2,000 in back pay.

Employee Receives $3,800 in Restitution

An out-of-state contractor attempted to reduce the pay of an employee who was working in Denver by subtracting their travel expenses, resulting in a prevailing wage violation. The employee received more than $3,800 in restitution.

Denver Labor Protects Workers in Training

An electrical contractor had two apprentices working without journeymen on a city project for one day, resulting in a $350 prevailing wage underpayment. All apprentices working alone must be paid the journeyman prevailing wage rate.


Returned Wages

Our staff always works hard to get wages recovered for workers protected by the Prevailing Wage and Minimum Wage ordinances. In 2020, Denver Labor recovered more than $1 million dollars for unpaid workers, exceeding the previous annual record by more than $300,000. You can read some of the success stories in the link below.

 Chart with unpaid wages recovered by Denver Labor since 2013.

If you think you have been underpaid and are owed money from your employer, check if your name is on our list. We may have a check waiting for you.

Check If You Are Owed Money


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