Failure to Pay Overtime
Contact Our New York Overtime Pay Attorneys
Overtime laws are quite straightforward, but nonetheless, many employers violate these laws. If you have been wrongly denied overtime pay, contact the New York overtime pay attorneys at Phillips & Associates for a free, confidential consultation.
New York Overtime Pay Laws
If you work in the State of New York - or anywhere in the Tri-State area - the basic rules governing the payment of overtime are clear. If you are covered by the overtime laws, your employer must pay you one- and one-half times your regular rate of pay for all hours above 40 worked in a given week. One- and one-half times your regular rate of pay (also called time and a half) means that, for example, if you normally earn $20 per hour, for overtime hours you must be paid $30 per hour. A week is defined as a regular seven-day consecutive period. These standards are set by the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and are applicable to workers in any state.
There are many misperceptions about overtime wage laws. Some people believe they are entitled to overtime pay for any hours worked beyond eight in a given day. Others believe they are entitled to overtime pay because they had to work more than five days in a week or had to work on the weekend. Others believe they are entitled to double-time pay for those hours worked beyond 60 in a given week, or beyond 10 in a given day. Each of these beliefs is incorrect. Workers are free to contract for these sorts of additional benefits with their employers, and some workers - for example, many in unionized jobs - do receive these sorts of benefits. States are free to create additional overtime wage protections for employees, and in certain states - California, for example - some of these protections do exist. But there are no overtime laws beyond the basic overtime law described above in New York.
Another common source of confusion exists among workers who are not paid an hourly wage. Many assume that if they are not paid by the hour, they are not entitled to overtime pay. This is also incorrect. Workers who are paid a salary, paid by the piece, or by any other method are nonetheless entitled to overtime pay. Employers cannot simply reconfigure the manner in which compensation is paid in order to evade the protections to workers provided by FLSA. However, some issues with calculating overtime wages do exist where a worker is paid largely by tips, or where a worker resides with his or her employer.
Are You Covered by Overtime Laws?
An important area where there often is confusion is the question of whether a worker is covered by overtime laws. Not everyone is covered. Independent contractors - who are by definition, not employees - are not entitled to overtime. Further, FLSA contains exceptions for certain types of workers, including executive, administrative, professional, outside sales, and certain computer-related employees. Whether an individual fits within one of these exceptions requires an in-depth analysis of the duties and responsibilities of the employee. Simply because your employer calls you an "administrator" or "outside salesperson" does not determine whether you are exempt from overtime laws. It is important to consult with an attorney to determine whether you fall within one of these exceptions.
Phillips & Associates: Experienced New York Employment Law Attorneys
Even when employees are clearly entitled to overtime pay, many employers try to evade the responsibility to pay overtime. To protect your right to fair and full pay, you should consult with a NewYork overtime pay attorney. The attorneys at Phillips & Associates have successfully handled numerous unpaid overtime claims, as well as many other cases based on improper conduct by employers. We understand how to investigate and pursue claims your employer may want to conceal. Contact us today for a confidential consultation at (866) 229-9441.
Filing an Overtime Claim
New York Attorneys Knowledgeable in Employment Disputes
This country was founded on the premise that a person can earn a living by working hard, and federal wage laws make this possible. Unfortunately, when employers flout the laws, employees must fight back to protect their rights. The dedicated employment lawyers at Phillips & Associates have extensive experience helping New York workers collect the wages they have toiled hard to earn. Let us help you assert your rights.
Federal Law Requires Overtime Pay
The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) requires employers to pay eligible workers overtime. If a nonexempt employee works more than 40 hours in a seven-day workweek, the employer must pay the employee an overtime wage of time and one-half for each of the overtime hours. The New York State Department of Labor applies the FLSA rules to workers in this state.
There are many reasons why an employer may not pay overtime in accordance with the FLSA. Some mistakenly believe that salaried workers are not entitled to overtime. Others may intentionally misclassify exempt employees by giving them misleading job titles intended to disguise them as exempt. No matter the reason, however, these employers are violating the law, and their workers are entitled to collect back wages.
Overtime Claims Are Limited to Two Years
Employees owed back overtime wages can collect those wages by filing a lawsuit against their employer. The FLSA limits the recovery of overtime wage lawsuits to two years of back pay. In other words, an employee may recover wages dating back no further than two years from the date the suit is filed. Therefore, it is important for a worker who is owed overtime pay to contact an attorney as soon as possible.
In some cases, it is possible for an employee to seek more than two years of back overtime wages. The FLSA allows workers to collect three years of wages if the employer knew that it was violating the law but continued the illegal activity, nonetheless. If you are unsure what wages you may be able to collect from your employer, talk to an experienced attorney.
Workers Can Recover Wages and Additional Damages
Employees who bring a successful suit are entitled to collect the back wages owed to them. In addition, they can also collect what are called liquidated damages, which is a legal term for a fixed amount of compensation. The FLSA sets liquidated damages in overtime wage lawsuits at the amount of the back wages owed to the worker. Therefore, the total damages an employee could win equal twice the number of back wages owed.
In addition to wages and liquidated damages, workers who win their overtime wage suit can also collect attorney fees and court costs. This prevents workers from having to dip into their winnings to pay their lawyers and the costs of litigation.
Multiple Employees May Band Together
Even if an employee is not owed a large number of back wages, it may still make sense to file a lawsuit. Often, employers who violate the FLSA for one worker do so for many others, making it possible for multiple employees to join together and sue the employer for wages owed to each of them. This is often a more efficient way to litigate a case. If you believe that your employer may owe you and your coworkers back wages, ask an attorney for advice.
Consult Experienced Employment Lawyers Serving New York Workers
Employers often will not comply with the law voluntarily, and they should face consequences if they do not. This means that you may need to enlist the services of knowledgeable employment attorneys at Phillips & Associates. We have helped many workers in Manhattan and the other boroughs of New York hold employers accountable for violating federal law. Call (866) 229-9441 or fill out our contact form to schedule a free case evaluation.
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