FLSA Misclassification Causes Workers to Lose Money
Do you put in long hours on the job? Has your employer failed to pay you overtime wages because you are an “exempt” employee? Or an “independent contractor”? Employers often tell their employees they are exempt from overtime pay if they are paid on a salary basis. Some employers give an employee a title like “engineer,” “technical specialist” or “manager” in an attempt to classify the worker as an independent contractor.
You may have a right to overtime wages if your employer incorrectly classified you as an exempt employee or an independent contractor. However, filing a claim to collect can be complex without the help of an experienced lawyer. At the Law Office of P. Zachary Stewart, we understand the frustration workers experience when they are not rightfully compensated for the work they do. Contact our firm to help you determine whether you qualify to receive overtime compensation due to job misclassification.
What Is The Difference Between “Exempt” And “Non-exempt”?
Under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), there are two types of employees in the workplace – “exempt” and “non-exempt”. In short, all workers are “non-exempt”, unless they qualify for an exemption.
You should not assume that you are exempt from overtime pay based on your job title, because you are paid a fixed salary or because you are an independent contractor.
The Courts apply a “duties test” to determine whether a salary employee is exempt or non-exempt. Many times “independent contractors” are not truly independent – if not independent, then the worker may also be protected by the FLSA. Employers have a history of misclassifying their workers, which deprives them of overtime pay. The Courts apply an “economic realities test” to determine whether the worker is an independent contractor or an employee under the FLSA.
Non-exempt employees are protected by the wage requirements of the FLSA, including the right to (1) minimum wage pay and (2) overtime pay for all hours worked over 40 hours in a week. Overtime is required to be paid at 1 1/2 times the regular rate. Be advised that the regular rate includes all wages and compensation paid for work done in a week, which may also include per diems, commissions or bonuses, thereby making the overtime rate even higher than just the hourly wage rate.
Contact Us To Find Out If You Are Owed Unpaid Wages
If you are a worker with a potential claim due to employee misclassification, speak to an experienced attorney soon. Call the Law Office of P. Zachary Stewart in Weirton at 304-914-3577 or complete our online form. While we primarily serve clients in Pennsylvania and West Virginia, we also help clients nationwide with their employment law claims.