G.I. JOBS VIRTUAL CAREER EXPO   I   JULY 27TH

Things You Didn’t Know About Overtime

Overtime

The five most common mistakes employers make when calculating overtime wages and subsequently violate the FLSA are:

Misclassifying workers as exempt from overtime.

As stated above, don’t be fooled into thinking each exemption title is absolute. Research each position before you determine exemption status.

Making employees work off the clock.

Telling an employee to work off the clock due to a lack of productivity while on the clock is strictly forbidden. Employees who fail to meet company productivity standards should be given performance evaluations documenting their shortcomings. Poor performance is not a justification for having employees work off the clock.

Denying employee overtime because it was not approved in advance.

Once overtime hours are worked, they must be paid. Whether or not an employer knew about or approved the hours is inconsequential. Employees who violate written company policies regarding overtime can be counseled but never short paid as a result of working overtime without prior approval.

Failing to pay overtime wages for overtime hours as defined by the FLSA.

Paying only straight time for overtime hours is in direct violation of the FLSA.

Failing to count all hours an employee worked.

Failing to calculate travel time or calculating an hour with 10- to 15-minute breaks is also in direct violation of the FLSA.

Business owners are required by law to keep time records for all non-exempt employees. Any employer who states “I do not have to keep time records because my employees never work overtime” is wrong. Time records protect the employee as well as the employer. Any employee who claims they were not paid overtime only has to make the claim; it is up to the employer to prove otherwise. Without documented time records, an employer would have no way to definitively prove hours worked. Remember, it is an employee’s position within the company that determines whether or not they are eligible for overtime – not the method in which they are paid.

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