Overtime Attorneys in Tennessee
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Overtime Attorneys in Tennessee
When you put in an honest day of work, you expect to get paid a fair value for your contributions to the workplace. Before 1938, American employers got away with paying employees substandard wages while working in poor conditions. American workers had no guaranteed legal rights to demand fair wages, as well as receive extra compensation for putting in overtime work. At the height of the Great Depression, the United States Congress, at the request of President Roosevelt, passed the historically significant Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA)
Considered the foundation of employment law in the United States, the FLSA provides workers with several guaranteed rights, including the payment of a minimum wage and extra compensation for working overtime. Subsequent federal labor laws built on the legal precedents established by the FLSA, such as giving workers as much as 12 weeks unpaid leave to tend to family and personal matters. Many states have adopted employment laws that go well beyond the legal guarantees written into the FLSA.
If your employer has violated the FLSA, you should contact one of the best overtime attorneys in Tennessee. Your lawyer conducts a detailed investigation into your allegations by gathering evidence like timekeeping records. Getting legal support also helps you file a timely complaint and perhaps a civil lawsuit if your employer has committed repeated labor law offenses. Tennessee labor laws mostly reflect the legal standards set by the FLSA, especially when it comes to enforcing overtime and minimum wages.
For more than three decades, Morgan and Morgan has assigned labor attorneys to represent clients that wanted to file a complaint against their employers for violating the FLSA. When you hire one of the overtime attorneys in Tennessee from Morgan and Morgan, you let your employer know that you are serious about receiving the compensation guaranteed under the FLSA. Our goal is to help you recover unpaid wages by demonstrating your employer failed to follow the wage provisions written into the landmark federal labor law.
Learn more about getting the compensation you deserve by scheduling a free case evaluation with one of the overtime attorneys in Tennessee from Morgan and Morgan.
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What Does an Employment Lawyer Do?
An employment lawyer can represent a worker or an employer. You want to hire one of the overtime attorneys in Tennessee who works exclusively for employees to avoid a conflict of interest. A labor attorney who represents a few employers might not have your best financial interest in mind when filing a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC).
Employment attorneys in Tennessee ensure clients receive just compensation according to both state and federal law. Since Tennessee labor laws mostly mirror the provisions written into the FLSA, your employment lawyer refers to the FLSA to show your employer has not compensated you according to federal law. Employment lawyers also monitor the compliance requirements placed on employers by the FLSA. You have three ways to receive just compensation for a labor issue: file a civil lawsuit, negotiate a settlement, or submit a complaint with the EEOC. The most experienced overtime attorneys in Tennessee know which option to pursue that gets you the wages you deserve.
Your labor lawyer collects physical evidence that includes timekeeping records, as well as copies of any complaints filed by other employees for the same employment law violation. The Morgan and Morgan attorney assigned to your case explains your legal options, as well as the pros and cons of selecting each option. Because any type of legal action involves a deadline, your attorney files every document required by the FLSA before the expiration of the statute of limitations.
In addition to handling overtime and minimum wage complaints, employment lawyers also litigate cases that involve discrimination, wrongful termination, and sexual harassment. The FLSA and subsequent federal labor laws also allow workers to file complaints that address wage theft, unsafe workplaces, and whistleblower protections.
What Are the Wage Protections Granted by the FLSA?
The FLSA grants the United States Congress the power to establish a national minimum wage. States have the right to set a minimum wage, and many states like California have set a minimum wage that more than doubles the minimum wage established at the federal level. As of October 2022, the federal minimum wage of $7.25 has remained the same since it last changed in 2009. One of the reasons for the reluctance of Congress to raise the federal minimum wage is that many states have set a minimum wage that far exceeds the value of the minimum wage set by the United States Congress. However, Tennessee maintains a minimum wage that is the same minimum wage mandated by federal law.
According to the FLSA, American employers must pay an overtime wage valued at one and a half times the value of a worker’s standard wage. For example, an employee earning $10 an hour must receive overtime pay valued at $15 per hour. The United States Department of Labor (DOL) enforces the overtime provision written into the FLSA, which defines overtime as every hour worked over 40 hours a week. One workweek represents a “fixed and recurring period of 168 hours.” Because a workweek is 168 consecutive hours, employers have the flexibility to start a workweek on any day, at any time as long as the workweek constitutes 168 straight hours.
Employees 16 years and older qualify to work overtime. Federal overtime statutes also allow employers to demand workers put in overtime, with a few exceptions that often include healthcare workers.
What Are the Penalties for Violating the FLSA?
Employers that violate the FLSA face several possible legal consequences. The DOL has the legal power to fine an employer a value that cannot exceed $10,000 for every violation of the overtime provision written into the FLSA. This means a large employer that fails to pay the proper overtime wage to 20 workers can receive a fine as large as $200,000. Repeat offenders can face criminal charges, which can result in jail time for the managers responsible for violating the FLSA. As part of the DOL, the Wage and Hour Division (WHD) enforces the provisions established by every federal labor law. This includes deciding how much to fine an employer and what jail sentence to recommend for a repeat offender.
American workers also have the right to file a civil lawsuit that seeks monetary damages. Filing a civil lawsuit might not be a viable option because of the time and money it takes to litigate a case. Going through the EEOC represents a much faster process that helps you receive the overtime compensation that you deserve. However, one of the overtime attorneys in Tennessee from Morgan and Morgan might recommend filing a civil lawsuit for particularly egregious violations of the FLSA that cost you a substantial amount of money.
What Is the Process for Reporting FLSA Violations?
Many of the clients that we represent for overtime law cases are hesitant to file a complaint or a civil lawsuit for fear of retaliation from their employers. One of the many reasons to hire one of the experienced overtime attorneys in Tennessee is to receive protection against any type of retaliatory acts committed by your employer. For example, if you file a complaint against your employer with the EEOC, your employer cannot reduce your hours or terminate the work relationship as an act of retaliation.
Working with one of the experienced overtime attorneys in Tennessee from Morgan and Morgan helps you file a persuasive complaint with the WHD. Your lawyer ensures you follow every instruction and complete every section with accurate information. The WHD requests your contact information that includes a current email address, as well as a thorough explanation concerning your job responsibilities. Your attorney helps you collect physical evidence to send with your complaint, such as copies of your employee records.
The WHD provides a convenient online portal for workers to file overtime complaints against their employers.
How Do Employers Try to Scam Workers Out of Overtime Pay?
Unethical employers will try just about anything to avoid paying overtime. One of the most common types of cheating involves misclassifying workers by exempting them from receiving additional compensation by working overtime. For instance, your employer might reclassify your job as a salaried position to avoid paying you overtime. You should review each paycheck to prevent falling victim to the misclassification scam. Some employers offer workers time off for extra hours put in for overtime. For example, instead of paying an employee time and a half for overtime, an employer grants the employee two days of unpaid vacation time. Your employer might count necessary work preparations, such as putting on safety gear, as an off-the-clock job duty.
What Factors Make the Best Overtime Attorneys in Tennessee?
Before you hire one of the overtime attorneys in Tennessee, you should expect to put in a considerable amount of time conducting research. This requires you to consider several factors.
Experience Handling Overtime Cases
Since employment law consists of many issues, you want to hire a lawyer who has extensive experience handling overtime cases. Many law firms assign attorneys to overtime cases that do not have the required experience to take on unethical employers. At Morgan and Morgan, our employment law division consists of several sub-practices that include lawyers that exclusively handle overtime cases. Not only do we offer more than 30 years of experience, but we also offer experience that comes with a proven record of success.
Hands-On Legal Representation
When you hire an overtime lawyer, you expect the attorney to provide support during every step of the legal process. Unfortunately, many law firms assign a qualified employment lawyer to attend a free case evaluation, only to have the attorney delegate legal responsibilities to less experienced members of the law firm. When you work with one of the overtime attorneys in Tennessee from Morgan and Morgan, you can expect your attorney to provide legal support from the day of the free case evaluation until the day when your case gets resolved.
One of the reasons why we attract clients is because of the positive reviews we have received online. We encourage you to read the positive feedback left by clients on sites such as Yelp and Google to get an idea about why Morgan and Morgan attracts the best overtime attorneys in Tennessee.
Schedule a free case evaluation to get the ball rolling on your case.