The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) has rules regarding overtime pay to workers. Non-exempt employees – usually those who are paid an hourly rate – are to be paid one-and-a-half times their regular rate for any hours worked in excess of 40 hours per week. There are times that a salaried employee may qualify for overtime.
The FLSA has a new overtime rule that sets the pay threshold for exempt workers – those who are paid a salary – at $35,568 per year or $684 per week.
This new rule went into effect as of January 1, 2020. Before the new rule was enacted, the level was $23,660 per year, or $455 each week.
Employees who are paid salary must be paid at least the minimum salary threshold and meet duties tests to be exempt from the FLSA’s overtime requirements.
If either the duties test or the salary threshold is not met, then the employee must be paid the overtime rate of one-and-a-half times the regular hourly rate for any hours worked past 40 hours during the work week.
Who Is Exempt From Overtime Pay?
There are some salaried workers who are exempt from earning overtime pay. As an example, executives and administrative staff, professionals such as educators or attorneys, and those who make more than the income limits previously mentioned are not eligible for overtime per the FLSA guidelines and requirements.
Also, if the employee contract indicates that the employee is exempt from overtime pay, then the employee would not be eligible for the extra pay for hours worked in excess of 40 hours per week. However, if you are paid an hourly wage, you clearly are not exempt from receiving the overtime rate.
How To Calculate Overtime Rate As A Salary Employee
If you are paid salary, it may be difficult to determine what your hourly rate is so you can be paid overtime. As an example, your weekly salary is $500 per week, which is the same if you work 30 hours per week or if you work 40 hours.
If the $500 is divided by 40 hours, then the hourly rate would be $12.50 per hour. That is the figure that would be used to determine overtime pay for hours in excess of 40 hours.
Overtime would be one-and-a-half times your regular hourly rate, which in this case would be $12.50 per hour. Any hours in excess of 40 worked should be paid at $18.75 per hour.
If your employer doesn’t pay you overtime, or if they say you are not eligible for overtime because you receive a salary, you should determine if you are not exempt. If you are not exempt from the overtime rules, you should then file a complaint with human resources and gather the supporting documentation for your claim.
What To Do If You Think You Should Receive Overtime
If you don’t think you are an exempt employee, then you should document everything and keep track of your hours and calculate your pay. You should then compare those totals with your actual paycheck and paystub.
You should make sure that the hours that you work are approved by a supervisor. As an example, if you are paid salary and you are non-exempt, and you are going to be working in excess of 40 hours per week, then be sure to talk to management.
If you are not approved to work more than 40 hours per week, then don’t do it. Otherwise, if you do work more than 40 hours per week your employer will say the work was unauthorized and they will refuse to pay overtime.
If the hours were approved, and you were not paid overtime, then you will need to file a claim to recover compensation for your damages.
If you have been the victim of wage theft because you were not paid overtime that you should have received, you should enlist the help of an employment law attorney.
An employment lawyer will be familiar with the state and federal laws that apply to your specific situation. An attorney will be able to file a formal complaint and will be able to pursue legal action if it is necessary.
There is a time limit for pursuing a claim after you suffered wage theft. You have 180 days from the date of the incident to recover compensation for your damages.
If you wait too long, you will not be able to get compensated for your lost wages and other damages. Complete the Free Case Evaluation Form on this page today.