Overtime refers to the work you do beyond your regular work hours a week. Any work you do more than your regular work hours is considered overtime. And it’s important that you get paid for it correctly. Here’s why.
That’s What the Law Says
If you work 40 hours a week, US labor law requires companies to pay you for your overtime work. Hence your company should abide by it and pay you for yoru overtime work.
However, there are exemptions to it. If you are under the “exempt employees” class 9 which is determined in 2 ways: the duty and salary tests), unfortunately, you’re not eligible for overtime pay.
Unfortunately, even those who are eligible for overtime pay are sometimes aren’t paid well for working beyond their regular work hours. Fortunately, seasoned lawyers from https://eclaw.com/blog/how-to-prove-unpaid-overtime/, you can do something about it. And you have several options.
If your employer didn’t pay you for your overtime, one of the things you can do is file a wage claim. You can also file a lawsuit against your employer, so you can get your lost wages. Or, you can make a claim for the waiting time penalty if you no longer work for that employer.
This, of course, may require some time to be resolved. Hence, some people just try to just let it go. But, you shouldn’t. It is your right and make sure to fight for it.
You Deserve it
When you work, you don’t just give your time and effort for it. Most of the time, you probably put your heart in it too. Even if you’re working beyond your regular working hours, you still make sure that you do it right. Therefore, all those efforts should be given a reward – in cash and not by some mere coupons or whatnot that don’t equal your worth.
You worked hard for it. Instead of using your extra time for relaxing and for spending time with the people you love, you used it to do your job well for your company. And you also put your 100% on it. Therefore, you deserve to be paid, especially if it’s mandatory overtime.
You Need it
Everyone has their own bills to pay. And, of couse, everyone has their own financial challenges to face. That’s why you’re working for a company, so you can get paid and support your financial needs. You need it (who doesn’t?).
So, even if it’s “not much,” it still matters. When your overtime pay adds up, it would still be a big addition to pay your bills and solve your financial issues. Therefore, it’s a must that you know your worth and your rights. Because if you don’t, who will pay your bills and solve your financial problems?
What Will Happen to Employers for Not Paying Overtime?
While you live in a free country, not many people have the strength to hold their employers accountable for not paying overtime. But, it’s actually your right if you fall under the non-exempt class.
If you decide to take legal actions, you can recover your overtime pay even if you’re no longer working for your previous company. Aside from that, companies not paying overtime will likely face hefty fines not just from the state but also from the Department of Labor.
Employers who aren’t paying overtime right may also need to shoulder the bill for the costs their employees incurred for seeking legal advice and counsel. Hence if you’re the employee, you won’t need to worry much about your legal expenses.
What Can Employees Do to Start Taking Action?
If you’re an employee who’s eligible for overtime pay yet you weren’t paid well, one of the first things you can do is to find a reliable lawyer to help you. They know the labor law like the back of their hand and they will surely help you have an edge in court.
Also, they can give you pieces of advice on how you can prove your claims against your employer. They will help you get the right documents, so you won’t have to pour your time and effort down the drain looking for documents that will not help you enough to prove yoru claims.
It’s understandable why employees don’t seek legal help right away when they’re not paid well by their employees. It could be out of fear of not being able to find another job, the legal expenses, etc. Regardless of what your reason is, always remember to know your rights and hold people accountable for their wrongdoings.