Texas Unpaid Overtime Claims Lawyers
The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) is a federal law which requires that most employees who work more than 40 hours in a week receive overtime pay. Very often, employers do not pay workers overtime even if they are entitled to it. This is illegal and employers who act with such disregard for the FLSA hurt their workers by withholding money that they have earned.
If your employer has not paid you an overtime rate of at least time and a half for each hour worked in a week over 40, you may be able to hold it responsible for paying you the money you are owed. The Texas unpaid overtime claims lawyers of Leichter Law Firm PC, can help you determine whether or not you have a valid case. Call (956) 205-0884 to learn more.
Employees Who are Denied Overtime Pay
Any employee can be denied rightful overtime pay, but certain categories of employees more commonly lose out on being paid what they deserve. Categories of workers most often cheated out of overtime are:
SALARIED EMPLOYEES: Many people believe that if you are paid a salary, you are not entitled to overtime. The truth is, many salaried employees are entitled to overtime pay, even if they have a job title such as “manager,” “office manager,” “administrative assistant,” or the like.
INDEPENDENT CONTRACTORS: Employers often try to avoid paying overtime by making a worker an “Independent Contractor.” Simply being a contract worker does not mean that you are not entitled to overtime pay. If you have agreed to be a contract worker or 1099 employee, you may still be entitled to overtime pay.
HOURLY EMPLOYEES: If an employer requires an hourly employee to work “off-the-clock,” such as pre-shift work preparing for the workday (starting the computer, reading e-mails, preparing tools or equipment), work during an unpaid lunch period, post-shift work closing out the workday (e.g. finalizing paperwork, sending reports), or work from home, then the employee may be entitled to overtime pay for that time worked.
At the Leichter Law Firm PC, our experienced and aggressive overtime lawyers only represent employees, never employers. We will fight to get you what you are owed from your employer, or former employer. We always offer a free consultation with an overtime lawyer. Call (956) 205-0884 today to speak with an overtime lawyer.
The law automatically allows recovery for two years preceding the date a lawsuit was filed. It also can be extended to a three-year period for willful violations.
Under the law, when a company is found to be in violations of overtime wage laws, they are generally required to pay the employee double the amount of back overtime wages as a penalty for violating the law. Also, when a lawsuit is successful, the violating companies are often required to pay your attorney’s fees and costs in addition to the overtime penalties. YOU MAY BE ENTITLED TO THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS IN UNPAID WAGES even if you no longer work for that employer. Also, the law makes it illegal for any employer to retaliate against an employee who demands their fair pay under the law. Judges enforcing these laws come down hard on employers who retaliate against employees. If your employer does retaliate against you, you could recover even more money.
Leichter Law Firm PC, fights to recover unpaid overtime and additional damages for individual clients and large groups of employees. Among the employees we represent are:
- Accounting personnel
- Cable installers
- Call center or customer service employees
- Computer and IT employees
- Construction workers
- Hotel and Restaurant Workers
- Independent contractors or contract workers
- Loan officers, loan consultants, loan processors, and mortgage industry employees
- Nurses and other healthcare workers
- Oil and gas workers, field workers, and field service technicians
- Paralegals and legal assistants
- Repair technicians
- Retail store employees
- Secretaries, payroll clerks, and general admin personnel
- Waiters, waitresses and other tipped employees
If your employer is denying you overtime pay, you are being exploited. An attorney can help you recover the money you should have been paid to begin with.
Ways an Employer Can Con You Out of Your Overtime Pay
Typically, an employer will want to deny any claims an employee makes about being denied overtime pay. They will do this by simply denying that any overtime even took place. Often the employer will go through some bizarre and deceitful tricks in order to not pay their employees their rightful ‘time and a half’. Some of the methods that an employer will implement include:
- They may be averaging your hours over a few weeks. Say you work 35 hours one week and then 45 hours the next week. An employer could average these two numbers together and say that you worked 40 hours on average per week. However, by law, you deserve overtime pay for the second week.
- They could be paying compensatory time. Also called ‘comp time’, this just means that an employer will essentially give you the option to use your overtime for time off later. This is only legal in the public sector, and if you’re being comped for your overtime, you may be entitled to back payments.
- They could be claiming not to know about your overtime. If this is the case, there is usually an insurmountable amount of evidence in favor of the employee. If an employee wanted to hide the fact that they were working overtime, this would be difficult to disprove, but we find that this is rarely the case.
- They could not be paying you if you’re an undocumented citizen. This is a slap in the face to any hardworking person in this country, even if they do not hold a visa or citizen status. Employers are required by law to pay full wages and overtime to all employees, regardless of legal status.
- They could claim that the overtime work couldn’t classify as beneficial work time. The courts have a good guideline on what they consider useful work time that would rank as overtime. If the work is of a genuine benefit to the employer, the employer doesn’t stop an employee from continuing their work, or the employer knows or at least has a reason to believe that the work is being done, then the employer deserves to pay you for your overtime work.
If your employer is claiming any of these reasons for denying you your overtime pay or any other scheme that hasn’t been mentioned you need to call an unpaid overtime attorney. The benefits of an experienced attorney can make a world of difference as you seek a fair settlement and the wages you’ve rightfully earned.
The Prevalence of Unpaid Overtime
When an employer doesn’t pay you the wages that you have rightfully earned, they are participating in wage theft. It is such a known problem that laws against it were written back in 1938 by the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). A recent study put on by professors at Cornell, UCLA, led to a report called Broken Laws, Unprotected Workers and surveyed over 4,000 workers from New York City, Los Angeles, and Chicago for potential violations of labor codes. What they found is incredibly disheartening and shows how widespread our wage issues are in America.
- 19.1 percent of the workers they surveyed had worked more than 40 hours in the past week, which put roughly 800 workers at risk for an overtime violation.
- Of these 800, 76.3 percent reported not having received adequate overtime pay for their hours worked.
- Nearly 14.6 percent of all American employees are affected by wage theft if this survey is adequately representative
- 14.6 percent translates to roughly 18 million American workers
Overtime pay is a largely political issue, and laws regulating it have been debated for years. As the law states now, American workers should not be in the position to be fighting for overtime wages that are due to them. It is our mission statement at Leichter Law Firm PC to make sure that anybody who has been the victim of a company withholding their rightful overtime earnings gets what they worked for.
Contact a Texas Unpaid Overtime Attorney
If you have worked more than 40 hours in a week and have not been paid an overtime rate for it, you may be able to hold your employer liable for the pay you are owed. The Texas unpaid overtime attorneys of the Leichter Law Firm PC can help you get the payments you have already earned. Call (956) 205-0884 to speak with a lawyer today.