Important federal and state laws have been created to protect employees (and guide employers) on issues such as minimum wage and overtime pay. The better understanding both sides have of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), and how it affects them, the less chances for disputes later on. However, federal and state wage and hour laws are complex and often involve a many exemptions that can affect the rights of all involved. The Reddy Law Firm, P.C. has extensive experience in the area of wage and hour law, and can ensure that you have received all the compensation required by law for the work you’ve done.
Typically, the FLSA governs employers engaged in interstate commerce, or companies with at least $500,000 in revenue each year. Other federal wage laws may preempt the FLSA. For example, truck drivers are governed by the Motor Carriers Act, while the Railway Labor Act applies to most railroad workers.
The FLSA classifies employees as either exempt or nonexempt. Generally, classification is based on three criteria:
Subject to specific exceptions, an exempt employee must earn at least $23,600 annually, be paid on a salary basis as opposed to hourly, and be subject to specific job requirements and duties. Salaried employees receive a guaranteed amount of pay each week for any work performed. Exempt job duties must be executive, professional or administrative in nature, and the FLSA details the specific aspects of this classification.
Conversely, non-exempt employees are entitled to minimum wage and overtime pay. The current U.S. Federal minimum wage is $7.25 per hour. Georgia state minimum wage is $5.15. However, because the federal amount is higher, all GA employees are entitled to at least $7.25. In addition, nonexempt employees must receive overtime compensation at a rate of one and one-half times their normal pay rate for any hours worked beyond 40 each week.
(It should be noted that employers are required to maintain accurate payment and salary records; however, you should also maintain personal records that reflect your pay rate, days and hours worked, and dates of wage payment.)
The FLSA does not require employers to offer lunch or coffee breaks. However, breaks lasting fewer than 30 minutes are generally considered to be compensable work time, and must be included in work hours and overtime calculations.
If you feel you have not received minimum wage or have not been paid for overtime hours, or if you are an employer seeking to implement protocols for ensuring compliance with applicable laws, contact The Reddy Law Firm, P.C. today. We represent clients in wage disputes and overtime cases across the state of Georgia, and have a proven track record of successful results in these types of cases. Call our office today for a free consultation at (678) 629-3246 or email us.