Despite several years of economic improvement, we still live in a tough job market. Some employers in Florida have taken this to mean they can treat their employees inappropriately, and withhold well-deserved wages for their work.
Pensacola is home to some of the industries most affected by wage theft, including hospitality and tourism, which often see significant upticks in hours around peak travel season. The extra business may incentivize business to keep longer hours without offering extra pay to their employees, meaning you might run into overtime disputes with your employer.
At Morgan & Morgan, our wage and hour attorneys in Pensacola understand the unfortunate reality that some employers treat their staff unfairly, and deny them the wages they are legally entitled to. If you suspect this happening to you contact one of our attorneys to find out what your legal rights are, and how you can recover lost wages.
Who Falls Under Overtime Laws in Florida?
Overtime laws in Florida are primarily governed by the federal Fair Labor Standards Act, and covers employees who jobs meet the following criteria:
- Any employee of an enterprise engaged in interstate commerce which has gross receipts of at least $500,000 per year
- Any domestic worker who earns at least $1,700 per year or works at least eight hours per week
- Any employee of a hospital or other institution caring for the sick, aged, or mentally ill
Practically speaking, this includes the majority of Florida employees. Therefore, if you think you’re being incorrectly denied overtime or other pay, you likely have legal options to recover those wages.
Violations Might Not Always Be Obvious
Most FLSA violations are not as clear as having to work more than 40 hours in a week but not get paid the time-and-a-half for overtime premium for that extra five or 10 hours.
The majority of Florida wage and hour violations — much like other types of violations — are subtle, and many employees have gone years being deprived of their well-earned cash because of that subtlety.
Employees are supposed to be compensated for the entire time they are furthering their employer’s business, even if it exceeds 40 hours a week. Yet some employers require their employees to perform work either before clocking in or after clocking out.
This can mean requiring you to do a variety of things, like clean up after your shift, travel through security checkpoints or traverse across a facility to a distant worksite, or putting on extensive safety equipment and uniforms before clocking in.
Fifteen minutes of extra work a day might seem inconsequential, but that’s more than an hour a week, more than a week a year, and up to several months over the course of a career, all unpaid.
Many people think all salaried employees are exempt from overtime laws. This is, however, not the case. Only bona fide managers, executives, professionals, and administrative workers who exercise their own judgment can be exempt from overtime and required to work more than 40 hours a week without overtime.
Being classified as an independent contractor can also mean losing out on hard-earned wages.
A Pensacola Employment Attorney Can Help You Understand Your Rights
Getting shorted on overtime — or pay in general — for hours worked isn’t just bad faith, it’s illegal. If you decide to take legal action, you may not only get to set your employer straight, but you could also recover your lost wages.
Our Pensacola attorneys are knowledgeable regarding overtime disputes. They can help you discuss your options and investigate your claim, starting the process of bringing you justice.
If you believe your employer has wrongfully deprived you of overtime pay, contact us for a free case evaluation to have your situation evaluated and find out if one of our attorneys may be able to help.