Articles Posted in Overtime

See No Evil, Hear No Evil, Speak No Evil

Like many other employers, you’ve got a handbook policy that says that non-exempt employees cannot work overtime unless they obtain prior approval from a manager or supervisor. If, without prior approval from a manager or supervisor, a non-exempt employee works overtime and reports those hours to you, the Fair Labor Standards Act requires that you pay that employee overtime. (However, you can discipline that employee for violating your work rules).

But what happens if that same employee works overtime without prior permission and fails to report those hours. Must you still pay that employee overtime?

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Dropbox Logo 02

You know, being a client of the Blogger King has its perks. (That’s me. I’m the Blogger King). When I’m not litigating and counseling on employment-related issues, I’m taking blog post requests and emailing weekly updates of HR goodies that don’t make it onto the blog.

But, with my DropBox and Pocket chock full of recent cases, I’ll summarize the recent biggies.

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School lunch

How was your Thanksgiving? Survive Black Friday? (In case you’re wondering about a gift for me, noYes. Heck, yes (asking for a friend)).

Me? I almost left my kids on the North Pole as I counted the minutes until Monday. But, overall, I enjoyed a few days off.

Now, it’s back to work. *** Sips mai tai *** So, let’s talk about the Fair Labor Standards Act. As wage and hour claims generally continue to spike, I’m going to get into the weeds a bit and talk about meal breaks. Specifically, when do non-exempt employees get paid for meal breaks?

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Money

Last Friday, I had the honor and privilege of presenting at the Philadelphia Association of Paralegals’ Education Conference. The class was essentially a primer on the basics of employment law, during which I emphasized both the types of claims on which paralegals may assist clients, and the employment-law issues that the audience may encounter for themselvesat work.

We explored discrimination, disability accommodations, family and medical leave. And then we got to the Fair Labor Standards Act.

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Once is happenstance. Twice is coincidence. Three times is enemy action.”

(I’m pretty sure that was from Ferris Bueller)

Yesterday, in the Wall Street Journal, I read Lauren Weber’s article “Can You Sue the Boss for Making You Answer Late-Night Email?” And the answer is yes, provided that you are a non-exempt employee under the Fair Labor Standards Act and the time you spend answering that email is more than a few minutes a week.  It’s no different than when an employee checks company email at work. Work is work. Employees get paid to work. Continue reading

I’ve gotta hand it to the company in this recent federal appellate court opinion. The company almost — soooooo close — avoided several claims for unpaid overtime.

Let me set the stage for you. So, there I was wearing nothing but feathers and a coy smile. Back in 2011, the U.S. Department of Labor began investigating a complaint that a marketing company had misclassified some employees and failed to pay overtime. During the DOL investigation, the company sent the employees checks for back wages. Each check bore the following note in fine print:

“full payment from Actinlink [sic] or [sic] wages earned, including minimum wage and overtime, up to the date of the check.”

A bunch of employees deposited these checks. So, the marketing company claimed that, voila, those employees had agreed to waive their right to any additional back pay. Continue reading