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In general, the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) allows employees to collect back pay for overtime hours worked up to two years before the lawsuit is filed and until the case concludes. If an overtime lawsuit is successful, the employee can recover back pay, attorneys' fees, liquidated damages, and in certain circumstances, punitive damages.
Under the FLSA, liquidated damages must match the amount of unpaid wages for the worker who was denied overtime wages. In other words, if the worker is awarded $4000 in back pay, he or she may be eligible for an additional $4000 in liquidated damages. If the company or employer can show they reasonably believed their practices did not violate overtime law, liquidated damages may not be awarded.
Employees who file overtime lawsuits can also collect punitive damages, if they can prove their employer retaliated against them for filing a claim. Also, if the employee wins the overtime lawsuit, the employer may be required to cover the workers' out-of-pocket litigation costs, as well as an additional attorneys' fee award.
How Much Can I Recover Through an Overtime Lawsuit?
To determine how much you can recover through an overtime lawsuit, you must first find the difference between what you were paid and what you should have been paid. Every hour worked over 40 in a single workweek should be compensated at a rate of time-and-a-half. Therefore, if you worked 50 hours in one workweek and your regular rate is $10 per hour, you should receive $150 ($15 per overtime hour) in overtime pay. However, calculating your overtime pay rate may differ if you are paid by salary or piece rate.
If you were not paid at a rate of time-and-a-half for hours worked over 40, you may be eligible to recover overtime damages through a lawsuit. Contact our overtime attorneys at Morgan & Morgan today by filling out our free case evaluation form. Our attorneys can help you recover back pay and additional overtime damages for your employer's violations.