Overtime Labor Laws

Federal overtime laws, designed to help end the exempt vs. non-exempt debate, have made things worse. To non-exempt and exempt employees, labor laws continue to confuse.

Business Management Daily can help you comply with federal overtime laws. Learn when you have to pay overtime, and when you don’t.

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Freeman & Associates Contracting, a Raleigh construction firm, has agreed to pay four workers $20,000 in back wages after U.S. Department of Labor investigators determined the workers were improperly classified as independent contractors.
During a recent 12-month period, more than 7,750 FLSA wage-and-hour lawsuits were filed in federal courts, an increase of almost 10% over the preceding 12 months. The good news: There are some simple ways for employers to re­­duce the risk of wage-and-hour suits.

Retail giant Walmart has appealed to the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, asking it to overturn a $187.6 million class-action verdict issued two years ago. That decision followed a 32-day trial in 2006 that sent shock waves through the Pennsylvania employer community.

When it comes to paying hourly employees for all hours worked, the best policy is to fix any mistakes as soon as you can. Chances are, doing so will reduce your liability down the line.
Q. I work for a nonprofit organization. Several hourly employees of the organization volunteer during nonworking hours. Is that OK?
Do you have employees classified as inside sales employees? If so, you may be courting trouble unless you are absolutely sure they qualify for the exemption. That’s especially true if you also don’t track any extra hours they work.

The DOL’s Wage and Hour Division doesn’t want to see any funny business when it comes to accurately recording hours worked or paying employees on time. Don’t even think about manipulating payroll systems. Doing so will result in double damages going back three years.

Q. We have an hourly worker who oversees both the maintenance and housekeeping departments and supervises two employees. In this job, he has the authority to hire and fire. However, he is also a “working” supervisor who performs maintenance in and around the property. Can his status be changed to salary/exempt?
Garner-based KBE Landscaping will pay $14,651 in back pay to 33 em­­ployees after a Department of Labor investigation revealed the company failed to properly pay overtime to its hourly workers.
Cyrilla Landscaping in Coraopolis, outside Pittsburgh, has agreed to pay $39,091 in back wages to 29 workers following a DOL investigation—plus another $39,091 because the feds found the violations were willful.