This answer will depend on whether you are classified as an exempt or non-exempt employee. The difference between these types of workers and the jobs they hold is pay for overtime work. There are certain regulations that govern whether an employee should be exempt from receiving overtime pay.
Employees often have questions about overtime pay and other employee rights issues. Employment laws can be confusing, making it difficult to learn what your rights are and what you are eligible for.
Below, our West Palm Beach employment lawyers further discuss overtime pay, workplace violations that employees should be aware of, and occupations most at risk for violating overtime laws. If you have not been paid for all hours that you worked, you may be able to pursue past wages and other compensation. Request a free initial consultation to learn more.
Eligibility for Overtime Pay
Under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FSLA) employers must pay certain employees time and a half for working more than 40 hours in a week. This is considered overtime pay. It is important to note that requiring an employee to work more than 40 hours is not against federal law. It is only illegal when these excess hours are not compensated at the overtime rate. This again depends on which employees are subject to overtime law.
Exempt employees are salaried and do not receive any overtime pay because of their job duties, regardless of how many hours they work. Non-exempt employees whose job duties do not fit within the exemptions under FLSA would be eligible for overtime pay. Since FLSA’s exemptions are limited, the burden is placed on the employer to prove that any given employee or class of employees is exempt.
This has led to some states enacting restrictions on mandatory overtime, but Florida is not one of them. While Florida has its own wage and hours laws in place, the state defers to the FSLA for overtime and wage requirements. This means that not everyone working in Florida is eligible for overtime pay and not every employer is required to pay overtime.
Types of Employee Workplace Violations
When employers cheat the system, employees are not being paid fairly. It can be difficult to take legal action for a workplace violation, even when you understand your rights under the FSLA. Some overtime, wage and hour violations you should be aware of to ensure you are compensated fairly include:
Working off the Clock
This happens when an employer fails to account for hours an employee worked when he or she is not scheduled for his or her regular shift. According to the FLSA, the term “employ” means “to suffer or permit to work.” This means that working, on its own, is one of the requirements of being an employee.
When there are tasks or duties that an employer allows an employee to perform and that employee performs them, this work must be accounted for.
For instance, working off the clock includes an employee coming in for work early or staying late to finish a task or duty. This could also include an employee working through his or her lunch break. These should all be counted toward hours worked for non-exempt employees.
A violation often committed by employers is misclassifying employees as exempt from overtime. This includes those working in administrative, executive or professional positions. Employees with administrator, manager, or professional in their title may not necessarily be exempt from overtime pay.
For instance, a store manager working in retail may not meet the FLSA definition of a manager. Many retail workers are eligible to receive overtime pay. Job titles do not determine exempt status. In order for an exemption to apply, an employee’s specific job duties and salary must meet all the requirements set forth by federal regulations.
Jobs that get misclassified more than others include accountants and bookkeepers, computer technicians, warehouse foreman, clerical workers, and nurses and licensed practical nurses.
Independent contractors are considered self-employed workers who are not covered by tax or wage laws that apply to employees. Independent contractors are not eligible for certain benefits, such as medical, dental, and unemployment benefits. Employers may misclassify workers as independent contractors to get out of providing the same benefits to these workers.
An experienced lawyer could help determine if any of these workplace violations apply to you.
Common Occupations for Overtime Violations
While any almost any worker is susceptible to not being paid overtime for the hours they work, there are some industries that routinely overwork and underpay their employees. Workplace violations that are most severe and widespread commonly happen in low-wage jobs.
The following industries are some of the most at-risk for violating overtime laws:
- Cleaning service
- Home service
- Independent contractors
Some of the most common positions that routinely violate overtime laws include the following:
- Benefits analysts
- Business bankers
- Business sales consultants
- Cable technicians
- Call center and customer service representatives
- Case managers
- Delivery drivers
- Derivatives specialists
- Dry rate oil and gas workers
- Escrow officers
- Financial advisors
- Financial and sales representatives
- Food delivery workers
- Garbage workers
- Grocery store managers
- Home appraisers
- Hourly hospital employees
- Hourly nursing home employees
- Hourly retail employees
- Independent contractors
- Lab technicians
- Loan officers and loan consultants
- Maintenance supervisors
- Martial arts instructors
- Mortgage underwriters
- Newspaper carriers
- Nursing assistants
- Paratransit drivers
- Police Sergeants
- Registered nurse coordinators
- Retail assistant managers
- Retail representatives
- Satellite installers
- Stock brokers
- Tech support workers
- Technical writers
- Title officers
- Truck drivers
Reach Out to Our Legal Team Today
If you have been unfairly denied overtime pay, contact our legal team to discuss your claim. You may be eligible for financial damages, back pay and reinstatement of you job, should your employer attempt to retaliate. We are prepared to answer any questions you may have regarding federal overtime rules.
At Gordon & Partners, we offer a free case evaluation so that you may obtain legal advice without any obligation to retain our services. We also operate on a contingency fee basis, so there is not upfront cost to you unless we help you obtain compensation.