How do I recover back wages that are owed from a previous employer?
I am owed over $4000 from my previous employer. I stopped working for him when I was unable to cash the last paycheck I received (which was also 2 weeks late getting to me). He has numerous judgements and liens filed against him recently and in the past, that he just ignores. I know he does have a few personal assets (dirtbikes, tv's, etc). I would like to know what my options are to get him to pay.
You should consult an attorney in your area to determine if a lawsuit against your former employer is feasible. Since your former employer failed to timely pay you your wages under state law, you may be entitled to additional money in addition to wages owed.
One problem, however, is the fact that he already has judgments and liens against him. That means that if you could collect from him, you would be in line behind previous people who already hold judgments/liens against him. The likelihood of collecting from him is doubtful.
Another course you can take is to sue in small claims court ("conciliation court"). As long as your claim is $7,500 or less, you can file in this court. The procedures are easier to follow and you do not need an attorney to represent you. So you could avoid spending too much money on a case that you may never be able to collect on. However, if you do obtain a judgment against him, you can continue to try to collect from him at a future time when he may have new attachable assets. A judgment usually is good for 10 years. In that time, he may acquire new sources of income, new assets, etc. Keep in mind that the other creditors may beat you to it and you may never collect. But at least you will have a claim.
The only other option is if your former employer would voluntarily pay you. But that appears highly unlikely. Good luck.