I would recommend that you not return to work until you are paid in cash. Otherwise, file for unemployment benefits and look for another job. You can also file a complaint with the NYS Dept of Labor.
Simply contact the New York State Department of Labor Wage Enforcement Division.
This answer does not constitute legal advice and you should contact an attorney to confirm or research further any statements made in this answer. Any statements of fact or law I have made in this answer pertain solely to New York State and should not be relied upon in any way in any other jurisdiction.
I agree that you should contact the New York State Department of Labor at 1-888-4-NYSDOL. They protect workers and enforce New York State Labor Law for the payment of wages and wage supplements. If the NYS Department of Labor is unable to help, you can contact an employment lawyer to help you with your situation.
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You are entitled to receive your wages for the work that you have performed. You can either file a claim with the Department of Lawyer or bring an action for non-payment of wages. The main problem, of course, is that if the employer is not making payroll, it is likely that the employer doesn't have money to satisfy a judgment. However, there may be remedies against the individual owners or officers of the entity, although those can be difficult to pursue.
If the employer files for bankruptcy, then at least a portion of unpaid wages constitute a priority claim in a bankruptcy proceeding and have to be paid before most other creditor's claims.
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