Wage And Hour Disputes Attorney Serving Clients Across Florida
Prior to the stock market crash of 1929 and the ensuing Great Depression, only about 11 states had addressed the issue of wages and hours for workers in establishing a minimum wage and other requirements. When Franklin Delano Roosevelt was elected President in 1932, largely in response to the pain that everyday Americans were feeling in their pocketbooks, the federal government began addressing workplace issues regarding hours worked and wages paid.
The landmark legislation of the FDR administration was the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) of 1938, which established the workweek at 40 hours, set a minimum wage nationwide standard, and required employers to reimburse workers who toiled beyond a standard 40-hour week – that is, through overtime pay at one-and-a-half times their regular hourly wages.
Enforcement of the FLSA was delegated to the Department of Labor (DOL), and though states could not undercut federal standards, they could present higher minimum wages and more generous overtime rules. Now, Florida surpasses the federal minimum wage of $7.25 an hour, which was established in 2009.
The Florida rate is $11 an hour, set to rise to $12 an hour on September 30, 2023, and to $15 an hour in 2026.
Despite federal and state laws and regulations regarding wage-and-hour issues, some employers still try to avoid the established standards by labeling workers as independent contractors or by not recognizing hours legitimately worked as overtime.
If you or a loved one feel you have been denied your rights under federal and state legislation and regulations regarding wage-and-hour issues in Florida, contact Brick Business Law, P.A., for dependable legal assistance.
Our employment law attorneys help those who have been denied their proper compensation. We also represent employers who are facing disputes with employees or who wish to proactively establish internal contracts and rules correctly. Let us help you understand your rights and resolve your dispute.
Wage-And-Hour Laws In The U.S. And Florida
The Fair Labor Standards Act, or FLSA, holds employers accountable for proper treatment of their employees when it comes to wages paid and overtime honored. Many states, including Florida, have enhanced the FLSA’s boundaries and protections. Florida is on its way to mandating higher minimum wages, but in terms of overtime, the state tends to the standards of the FLSA – time-and-a-half after 40 hours in a seven-day work period.
Also, the FLSA imposes recordkeeping requirements and child labor standards, also recognized and honored in the Sunshine State. Florida is among several states that allow a lower minimum wage for tipped employees. Tip pooling is also allowed, which means that all tips are shared equally among the eligible employees, but again, the tips must bring everyone’s minimum wage above a set amount per hour. Pooled tips cannot be shared with nontipped employees, including management and back-of-the-house employees.
Common Wage-And-Hour And Misclassification Disputes
Overtime, or working off the clock, is probably one of the largest areas of wage-and-hour disputes. As indicated above, an employer may ask an employee to do a project at home, after a day in the office, and then not compensate for that work with overtime pay, considering it just another part of the job.
Now, this brings up the question of exempt and nonexempt employees. Generally speaking, employees who are paid by the hour are considered nonexempt, meaning any overtime must be compensated at one-and-a-half times their normal wage. Exempt employees are usually salaried, but that is not the sole requirement. They must also be paid a salary above a certain level and work in an administrative, professional, executive, computer or outside sales role.
Employee misclassification is another major area of dispute when it comes to wages. Employers should not classify workers as independent contractors to avoid the requirements of the FLSA and other state and federal statutes.
The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL), in fact, has recently published new guidelines for determining who is and who is not an independent contractor. Basically, an independent contractor is free to set their own schedule and provide services that increase or go beyond what an employee would normally do – that is, they are their own boss.
The FLSA requires that – when employees are paid by commission, whether as the sole source of income or as a supplement to a salary or hourly wage – the commission meet the standards of the required minimum wage plus any overtime work involved.
Commissions are often paid for sales goals or as an incentive for work above and beyond the normal 9-to-5 requirement. However, the FLSA does not address commissions in terms other than minimum wage, overtime and recordkeeping requirements. That being said, the Wage and Hour Division (WHD) of the DOL will investigate commission disputes to seek a resolution if a complaint is lodged.
A knowledgeable attorney has the resources to assist in wage and commission disputes to find the most favorable solution for your situation.
Wage Dispute Attorney Serving Clients Across Florida
If you believe your rights under federal and state laws and regulations regarding issues concerning wages, commissions and overtime have been violated, contact Brick Business Law for strong representation. We will provide personalized, one-on-one service and fight for your right to what’s owed you. Call us at 888-708-4250 today to schedule a consultation or send us a secure email.