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Civil Wage Penalty Assessment



Unlock Legal represents contractors faced with a Civil Wage and Penalty Assessment (“CWPA” ). A CWPA will be issued to subcontractors, prime contractors and their surety by the Department of Labor Standards Enforcement (“DLSE”). The DLSE monitors and investigates public works projects throughout California and the enforcement of California’s prevailing wage laws.

For the prime contractor, the CWPA deadlines are extremely important to pay close attention to as the contractor, and possibly the surety, are equally responsible for paying the wages and, potentially, the penalties owed by the subcontractor.


Within 30 days of the service of the CWPA a request for settlement may be submitted to contest the amount of wages and/or penalties. It is best to hire an attorney experienced with CWPA defense prior to this stage, as this is often the best opportunity to present all supporting documentation and to reach settlement.

Within 60 days from the date of service of the CWPA a Request for Review may be submitted. Again, hiring an experienced lawyer to represent you is in your best interest. Once you submit your request, a hearing officer will be appointed, who will act as the judge and jury at the formal hearing. Submission of the Request for Review also triggers your right to review the evidence that the DLSE used to put together the CWPA. The 60-day deadline to submit a Request for Review is crucial since failure to timely submit a Request for Review can result in a judgment in the full amount of the CWPA (wages and penalties) being entered against subcontractors and/or prime contractors.

These cases are complicated and document intensive. Do not attempt to handle them on your own. Investing in experienced legal representation can save you peace of mind and money. The attorneys at Unlock Legal are ready to represent you and unlock your peace of mind.

Professionals We Have Helped

“Miranda went above and beyond to help resolve my case. She was attentive, hard working, and extremely thorough from our initial consultation. I would highly recommend Miranda McCroskey!”


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