Sometimes wage theft has been ongoing and it isn’t noticed for a while. As an employee, you need to be proactive and check your paystubs and any documentation to make sure you are being paid the full amount and that you are fairly compensated for all your work.
Federal laws require that you be compensated for overtime pay. Overtime pay is 1.5 times your regular hourly wage for any hours worked past 40 hours in a week.
If you are not paid overtime, then you are the victim of wage theft. You do have rights and resources available if you find yourself in that situation.
With the help of an employment law attorney, you can make sure your claim is on the right track and that you recover the compensation that you are entitled to receive.
Be sure to maintain evidence and documentation, so you can make sure you have the supporting evidence that you need to show that you have been the victim of wage theft and you were not paid for your overtime that you were entitled to receive. Don’t delay getting your claim underway.
What Is Overtime Pay And Who Receives It?
Overtime pay is required by federal and state laws. Most employers must pay overtime in specific situations.
Overtime pay is 50 percent of your usual hourly pay. That means you are entitled to time and a half your regular wage for every hour of overtime that you work.
There are some exceptions to these laws, so not every employee will be entitled to overtime compensation, but most employees are entitled to it.
Non-exempt employees are eligible to receive overtime pay, and those who are not eligible to receive overtime are considered exempt employees.
There is what is called a weekly overtime standard that is imposed by federal and state laws. This means that non-exempt employees can receive overtime for every hour that they work beyond 40 hours during a week. How many hours that they work a day doesn’t apply to the situation.
For example, you may work two 12-hour days followed by a 6-hour day. You don’t exceed 40 hours, so you are not entitled to receive overtime pay based on the weekly standard established by laws.
There are a few states, including California, that set a daily standard that requires overtime pay for any hours in excess of 8 that you work during a day.
So, if you work two 12-hour days, you would be eligible for 4 hours overtime on each of those days although you don’t exceed the 40-hour workweek.
You should familiarize yourself with the laws that apply to the state where you are working.
Which Employees Receive Overtime
If your company falls under the FSLA, or under specific state laws, you may be entitled to overtime pay. To qualify for overtime, you must be a non-exempt employee as previously discussed.
If you are an exempt employee, you are most likely not entitled to overtime pay. Exempt employees often include managers or supervisors, journalists, or other workers who are usually paid a set salary.
To proceed with a claim, you will need to maintain supporting evidence and documentation. This includes employment contracts, your employee handbook, paystubs, time sheets, memos, and emails that pertain to your work and your salary.
How An Employment Lawyer Can Help
If you believe that you suffered wage theft because you haven’t been properly paid overtime that you were entitled to receive, you should speak with an employment lawyer who handles wage theft claims. These attorneys are familiar with the state and federal laws that apply to overtime pay.
Employment laws do vary from one state to another, so it is best to speak with an attorney who can advise you on the laws that apply to your specific situation and who can advise you on your specific case.
There are some employment law attorneys who take cases on a contingency basis, so be sure to go over payment with your lawyer when you retain their services.
If you believe that you have been cheated out of overtime pay and that you are the victim of wage theft, you should complete the Free Case Evaluation Form on this page and talk with an attorney who handles employment law matters in your area.