One of the most important reasons for writing our weekly wage and hour blog posts is that we understand the importance of individuals knowing their own rights. Being informed and educated about what your employer can and cannot do protects you from being treated unlawfully. Simply put, if you don’t know that your employer is treating you illegally, how can you stop it?
To help you become more familiar with your rights relating to what work your employer must pay you for and at what rate (regular or overtime), we’ve created a pamphlet with some basic “Know Your Rights” information.
You can also access the pamphlet anytime you, or someone you know, has a question about overtime pay – just click on the “Know Your Rights” icon on the right side of the Wage & Hour page to download the pamphlet. Feel free to provide copies to anyone you know who might have questions or concerns about what rate of pay they are receiving. Keep in mind the following about overtime pay:
• Unless you are exempt from overtime laws, your employer must pay you overtime wages (1.5 times your regular rate of pay) for any hours you work over 40 per week.
• Even if you receive a salary, you might still be entitled to overtime wages if you have been misclassified as “exempt.”
• Employers sometimes mischaracterize employees as independent contractors to avoid paying overtime wages.
• Your employer can’t force you to punch in at separate clocks to avoid paying you overtime.
• Your employer can’t force you to only record 40 hours on your timesheet if you worked more than 40 hours.
• The fact that you work on a salary, piece rate, or commission basis does not necessarily mean you are not entitled to overtime wages for hours worked over 40 per week.
Most importantly, know that the more information you have, the more power you have to ensure that your rights aren’t being violated. If you have questions about this post, the “Know Your Rights” brochure or other wage related issues, contact an Attorney at Hawks Quindel, S.C. for a free consultation.
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