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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Determining the amount of overtime pay depends on employees’ hourly rate of pay for the first 40 hours. That can sometimes be more complicated than it sounds, especially for employers that pay their hourly employees a set amount for their entire workweek, including overtime.
The questions surrounding who is exempt and who is non-exempt from overtime obligations under the FLSA have spurred hundreds of class action lawsuits costing employers hundreds of millions of dollars in monetary damages. Employers must struggle with understanding the different types of exemptions as well as what actions can jeopardize those exemptions, and what the overtime ramifications of misclassification can be.
The former personal assistant to Lady Gaga has filed a lawsuit claiming the entertainer failed to pay her overtime. She says she’s owed hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Class-action litigation returned to the spotlight with last year’s Supreme Court decision in Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. v. Dukes. In Wal-Mart v. Dukes, the Supreme Court refused to certify what would have been the largest-ever employment class action against a private employer. Now the 7th Circuit has weighed in.
Sometimes an employee pro­­moted to management just isn’t ready for new responsibilities. Maybe she’s having a hard time thinking like an exempt employee, longing for the days when she was entitled to breaks and overtime. Fortunately, if you discipline such employees for neglecting their duties, they can’t later claim they actually were hourly employees entitled to overtime.

Sometimes, it’s better to settle than to fight. If a case is pretty clear and the potential liability small, it makes sense to pony up the settlement money. Otherwise, a court may punish bullheadedness with a large award for attorneys’ fees.

Q. We would like to hire a few college interns over the summer, but with our tight budget, I don’t think we can pay them. What rules apply to unpaid internships?
Rocky Mount-based Premier Ware­­housing Ventures is being sued over pay practices at its former facility in Jurupa Valley, Calif. Premier no longer operates the facility, but current and former employees have filed a lawsuit alleging wage-and-hour violations dating back to 2003.
A federal court has ordered Roseville-based Aspen Nursing Services to pay more than $210,000 in back wages and liquidated damages to 22 employees in Kentucky and Ohio.
Not every collective or class-action case has to blow up into a multimillion-dollar nightmare. Instead, some judges are approving more modest settlements, if this case is any indication.
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