(a) An employer who violates a provision of AS 23.10.060 or 23.10.065 is liable to an employee affected in the amount of unpaid minimum wages, or unpaid overtime compensation, as the case may be, and, except as provided in (d) of this section, in an additional equal amount as liquidated damages.
(b) An action to recover from the employer the wages and damages for which the employer is liable may be maintained in a competent court by an employee personally and for other employees similarly situated, or an employee may individually designate in writing an agent or representative to maintain an action for the employee. The consent shall be filed in the court in which the action is brought. At the request of a person paid less than the amount to which the person is entitled under AS 23.10.050 — 23.10.150, the commissioner may take an assignment in trust for the employee of the full amount to which the employee is entitled under this section and may bring any legal action necessary to collect the claim.
(c) The court in an action brought under this section shall, in addition to a judgment awarded to the plaintiff, allow costs of the action and, except as provided in (e) — (h) of this section, reasonable attorney fees to be paid by the defendant. The attorney fees in the case of actions brought under this section by the commissioner shall be remitted by the commissioner to the Department of Revenue. The commissioner may not be required to pay the filing fee or other costs. The commissioner in case of suit has power to join various claimants against the same employer in one cause of action.
(d) In an action under (a) of this section to recover unpaid overtime compensation or liquidated damages for unpaid overtime, if the defendant shows by clear and convincing evidence that the act or omission giving rise to the action was made in good faith and that the employer had reasonable grounds for believing that the act or omission was not in violation of AS 23.10.060, the court may decline to award liquidated damages or may award an amount of liquidated damages less than the amount set out in (a) of this section.
(e) If the plaintiff prevails in an action for unpaid overtime compensation under (a) of this section, the court shall award reasonable attorney fees to the plaintiff unless the defendant shows by clear and convincing evidence that the act or omission giving rise to the action was made in good faith and that the defendant had reasonable grounds for believing that the act or omission was not in violation of AS 23.10.060, in which case
(1) the court may award attorney fees to the plaintiff in accordance with court rules; or
(2) if the defendant would be entitled to attorney fees if the action were subject to the standards under court rule offers of judgment, the court may not award attorney fees to either the plaintiff or the defendant.
(f) If the defendant prevails in an action for unpaid overtime compensation under (a) of this section and had previously made an offer of judgment to the plaintiff, the court shall award attorney fees to the defendant unless the plaintiff proves to the satisfaction of the court that the action was both brought and prosecuted in good faith and that the plaintiff had reasonable grounds for believing that the act or omission was in violation of AS 23.10.060. If the court awards attorney fees to the defendant, the award shall be made in accordance with court rule.
(g) Failure to inquire into Alaska law is not consistent with a claim of good faith under this section.
(h) Subsections (d) — (g) of this section do not apply to an action brought under this section by the commissioner.
(i) The commissioner may supervise the payment of the unpaid overtime compensation owing to an employee under AS 23.10.060. Payment in full in accordance with an agreement by an employee to settle a claim for unpaid overtime compensation or liquidated damages for unpaid overtime compensation constitutes a waiver of any right as to this claim the employee may have under (a) of this section to unpaid overtime compensation or liquidated damages for unpaid overtime compensation.
(j) In a settlement for unpaid overtime compensation that is not supervised by the department or the court, an employee is entitled to liquidated damages under (a) of this section unless the employee and the employer enter into a written settlement agreement in which the employee expressly waives the right to receive liquidated damages. A private written settlement agreement under this subsection is not valid unless submitted to the department for review. The department shall review the agreement and approve it if it is fair to the parties. The department shall approve or deny an agreement within 30 days of receipt. A waiver of liquidated damages may not be a condition of employment.
Other Sections in this Chapter:
- Sec. 23.10.015. False representations to procure employees prohibited.
- Sec. 23.10.020. Penalty for violation of AS 23.10.015.
- Sec. 23.10.030. Worker’s right of action.
- Sec. 23.10.035. Limit of application.
- Sec. 23.10.037. Lie-detector tests.
- Sec. 23.10.040. Payment of wages in state. Repealed
- Sec. 23.10.043. Deposit of wages.
- Sec. 23.10.045. Payments into benefit fund.
- Sec. 23.10.047. Employee’s lien.
- Sec. 23.10.050. Public policy.
- Sec. 23.10.055. Exemptions; compensation of executives, administrators, and professionals.
- Sec. 23.10.060. Payment for overtime.
- Sec. 23.10.065. Minimum wages.
- Sec. 23.10.070. Exemptions from minimum wage.
- Sec. 23.10.075. Labor standards and safety division.
- Sec. 23.10.080. Powers and duties of division.
- Sec. 23.10.085. Scope of administrative regulations; room and board deductions.
- Sec. 23.10.090. Administrative procedures.
- Sec. 23.10.095. Adoption of federal regulations.
- Sec. 23.10.100. Employer to keep records.
- Sec. 23.10.105. Posting summary required.
- Sec. 23.10.115. Enforcement by injunction.
- Sec. 23.10.120. Enforcement of subpoenas.
- Sec. 23.10.125. Collective bargaining.
- Sec. 23.10.130. Statute of limitations.
- Sec. 23.10.135. Violations.
- Sec. 23.10.140. Penalty.
- Sec. 23.10.145. Definitions.
- Sec. 23.10.150. Short title. Repealed
- Sec. 23.10.325. Purpose.
- Sec. 23.10.330. Exempted employment.
- Sec. 23.10.332. Authorization for children under 17 to work.
- Sec. 23.10.335. Employment of children under 14.
- Sec. 23.10.340. Employment of children under 16. Repealed
- Sec. 23.10.350. Employment of person under 18.
- Sec. 23.10.355. Employment of persons under 21.
- Sec. 23.10.360. Regulations for minimum standards and work opportunities.
- Sec. 23.10.365. Enforcement.
- Sec. 23.10.370. Penalty.
- Sec. 23.10.375. Policy.
- Sec. 23.10.380. Right to return transportation.
- Sec. 23.10.385. Enforcement by civil action.
- Sec. 23.10.390. Construction of contracts.
- Sec. 23.10.395. Orders and regulations.
- Sec. 23.10.400. Penalty.
- Sec. 23.10.405. Legislative declaration of hazard.
- Sec. 23.10.410. Limitation on period of employment in underground mines and requirement for pay for certain work.
- Sec. 23.10.415. Penalties. Repealed
- Sec. 23.10.430. Access to personnel files. Repealed
- Sec. 23.10.600. Employer protection from litigation.
- Sec. 23.10.610. Limits on causes of action for disclosures.
- Sec. 23.10.615. Employer’s compliance voluntary.
- Sec. 23.10.620. Employer policy.
- Sec. 23.10.630. Collection of samples.
- Sec. 23.10.640. Testing procedures.
- Sec. 23.10.645. On-site testing.
- Sec. 23.10.650. Training of test administrators.
- Sec. 23.10.655. Disciplinary procedures.
- Sec. 23.10.660. Confidentiality of results; access to records.
- Sec. 23.10.670. Effect of mandatory testing obligations.
- Sec. 23.10.699. Definitions.