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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Sen. Tom Harkin (D-Iowa), chairman of the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions, has introduced legislation that would make more exempt workers eligible for overtime pay.

Good news for employers: The Supreme Court today said President Obama overstepped his executive powers when he used “recess appointments” to name three members to the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB). As a result, the NLRB will likely have to rehear more than 100 cases from 2012. This could create a procedural logjam at the NLRB, an agency that has been aggressively pursuing expansion of employee rights on the job.

Most employers think that if they just tell employees not to work more hours than their regular schedules call for, that’s the end of it. They put together a policy prohibiting off-the-clock work and figure, “Hey, problem solved.” But that may not be the case.

Very small employers that aren’t engaged in interstate commerce sometimes try to argue that they don’t need to follow the FLSA because they are simply too local. But they often run into legal hurdles when employees sue, as this recent case shows.

According to Littler Mendelson employment lawyer Ilyse Schuman, word on the street in Washington is that the Labor Department will release a plan to overhaul the Fair Labor Standards Act’s overtime exemptions sometime “before November.”
Mira Loma-based Schneider Logis­­tics has agreed to settle charges it cheated a group of warehouse workers out of $4.7 million in wages. The company, which handles logistics for Walmart, agreed to the settlement without admitting any wrongdoing.
Q. What can we do if our employees worked overtime despite our instruction that they shouldn’t?
San Diego-based Fashion Graphics has agreed to pay back wages and penalties while voluntarily stopping all shipments until the $171,000 is paid to its current and former employees. The screen printer supplies such retail chains as Macy’s, Walmart, Kohl’s and Hot Topic.
Salaried retail managers often have to step in and perform nonmanagement tasks. The fact that they do some of the same things that hourly employees do doesn’t mean they aren’t exempt under the FLSA—as long as they are also managing at the same time.
With strong policies, employees (and their lawyers) will find it much harder to mount class-action wage-and-hour lawsuits. That’s because employees have to show that a common policy or practice was responsible for wage-and-hour violations.
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