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Columbus Unpaid Overtime Lawyer

The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) established the federal minimum wage, overtime pay, record keeping, and youth employment standards in the private sector as well as federal, state, and local governments.


The following wage and hour issues are covered by FLSA and Ohio law.

Wage and Hour Issues

Off-the-Clock Hours

Under FLSA and Ohio law, employees must be paid the federal minimum wage ($7.25 per hour) for every hour during the workweek. This means time spent working on behalf of your employer is compensable time, including time spent working before and after your shifts, during meal periods (if you still receive meal period deductions), travel time, and on-call time.


Unpaid Overtime

Under FLSA and Ohio law, when you work more than 40 hours a week, you are entitled to overtime compensation at 1.5 times your normal hourly rate unless you are exempt under the law. 


You should always accurately record and report your hours, whether that be through clocking in and out, reporting hours in writing, or another record-keeping option. If your supervisor instructs you to not report hours worked in excess of 40 hours, record them anyways, as this may be a FLSA violation.


When overtime compensation is denied, you may be entitled to receive your unpaid wages, liquidated damages, and attorney fees for up to 3 years worth of unpaid overtime wages. 


Misclassification of Exempt Employee

If you’re a salaried employee, you may have been told by your employer that you do not receive overtime pay. This is a common misconception and is not always true. Employers cannot unilaterally tell you whether or not you are an exempt employee. 


To be an exempt employee under FLSA, you must:


  • Be paid at least $23,600 per year ($455 per week);
  • Be paid on a salaried basis (meaning your compensation cannot be reduced based on the number of hours you work); and
  • Perform exempt job duties.


Despite that FLSA says exempt employees are salaried, there are still exceptions to that rule, usually when it comes to job duties. What defines an exempt job duty is highly technical and is best determined by what you do on a daily basis. 


Speaking to a Columbus unpaid wages lawyer can help you determine whether or not you have been misclassified as an exempt employee.


Tipped Employees

FLSA defines a tipped employee as an employee that regularly receives more than $30 per month in tips. Employers of tipped employees are only required to pay $2.13 per hour in direct wage as long as that amount combined with tips at least equals the minimum wage. If an employee’s tips combined with the direct wages do not equal the federal minimum wage, employers must make up the difference. That difference is called a tip credit.


For employers to claim tip credits, tipped employees must:


  • Regularly receive at least $30 in tips per month;
  • Be paid an hourly wage of at least $2.13 per hour;
  • Retain all tips; and
  • Be given actual notice in advance of the employer’s use of tip credit provisions.


Tip credit notices must include:


  • The amount of cash wage a tipped employee is receiving;
  • The additional amount the employer claims, which cannot exceed $5.12 (difference between cash wage and federal minimum wage);
  • That the tip credit claimed by the employer does not exceed the amount of tips an employee receives;
  • That all tips received by tipped employees are retained by the employee with the exception of a valid tip pooling arrangement; and
  • That the tip credit will not apply to tipped employees unless they have been informed of tip credit provisions.


When an employer fails to give notice to employees of intent to take tip credit, tip credit may not be claimed, regardless of employees suffering economic harm as a result. Employers can lose tip credit for many reasons, such as managers and owners taking part of the tips or forcing tipped employees to share tips with non-tipped employees.


Contact a Columbus Unpaid Wages Lawyer

If any of these issues sound like they apply to your workplace, don’t hesitate to contact a Columbus unpaid wages lawyer at Bryant Legal, LLC. We’ll determine whether or not you have a case; from there, we’ll determine the best approach to take and ensure you are properly compensated for your work. Call our Columbus office at 614-704-0546, email attorney Daniel Bryant at dbryant@bryantlegalllc.com, or fill out our contact form.

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