The Wage and Hour Division (WHD) of the Department of Labor (DOL) is always alert to catch any employers who violate overtime pay requirements as laid down by the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), whether inadvertent or intentional. Since employers are forbidden to retaliate against workers who challenge their failure to pay overtime, many workers find it easy to question their employers over the matter. Some industry sectors, such as retail and hospitality, bear the brunt of these complaints.
As most of these cases involve a group of workers, many such cases quickly assume large proportions and become class action suits, requiring the employer to pay back wages and damages as well as civil penalties. Of late, police departments are gaining publicity through the overtime violation charges filed against them by their employees.
Deliberately or unknowingly, employers keep getting into hot water with employment law and none more so than overtime pay requirements. Consider these recent cases:
Employers who deny overtime pay to low wage earning, non-exempt workers are found to err on two counts:
The Fair Labor Standards Act’s minimum wage, overtime and record-keeping provisions aim to control any noncompliance and violations by educating employers of their responsibilities. They also advise employees of their status and rights as non-exempt workers and tell them how an employer cannot make them waive their right to overtime pay and tell them of the available avenues for seeking redress against any FLSA violations. With the Overtime Regulations set to change in 2016, employers had better get prepared to avoid being found culpable of any violations including those for the off-time use of work-issued devices.
Have you ever been in a questionable situation regarding overtime?
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