Wage and Overtime Pay Laws
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The Fair Labor Standards Act
Employee wages, hours, and overtime pay are generally covered by the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). Under the Fair Labor Standards Act, employers are required to pay their employees a "minimum wage," and overtime wages when an employee works more than 40 hours in one week.
What Employees Are Covered by the Fair Labor Standards Acts?
The Fair Labor Standards Act applies to:
- Hourly employees
- Commissioned employees or bonus based pay
- Salaried employees
Generally, an employer must pay an employee at least $7.25 an hour for every hour the employee works. There are a few exceptions to this rule:
- Employees in training - Persons in training can be paid less than minimum wage if the employer follows specific guidelines.
- Tips - Employees receiving tips can be paid as little as $2.13 per hours, so long as the wages plus tips add up to the standard minimum wage.
In addition, each state has the option of raising the minimum wage above $7.25. For example, California has a minimum wage of $8.00.
How Overtime Is Paid
Under the Fair Labor Standards Act, an employer is required to pay an employee 1.5 times their hourly wage for every hour the employee works over 40 hours in one week.
- Example - If an employee is normally paid $10 an hour, that employee will be paid $10 multiplied by 1.5, or $15 an hour for the hours the employee works over 40 in one week.
Sometimes, employers will try to change the days an employee works in a week to try to avoid paying overtime to that employee. This is also prohibited under the Fair Labor Standards Act.
Types of Employment with Special Overtime Pay Requirements
- Executives or "White Collar" Employees - employees on salary who fall within specific categories are not required to receive overtime pay if the salary includes some allowance for overtime. "White Collar" jobs include executives, doctors, professionals, some administrative employees and employees in managerial positions.
- Government Workers - firefighters, police officers and other safety or emergency workers have specific rules for overtime pay because their workweeks are often more than 40 hours.
Do I Need an Employment Lawyer?
An employment lawyer can help you determine whether you are an employee entitled to overtime pay or a minimum wage under the Fair Labor Standards Act. A lawyer can also assist you with a claim if you believe your employer has not paid you the minimum wage, for hours worked above 40 in one week, and for any dispute regarding pay. If you are an employer, a lawyer will make sure you are in compliance with State and Federal Employment Laws.
Consult a Lawyer - Present Your Case Now!
Last Modified: 06-17-2014 11:45 AM PDT
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