The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) outlines basic national laws for the calculation of overtime pay, and they are fairly straightforward.
First, an employee must determine whether they are exempt from overtime pay. The process of determining if you are correctly labeled as exempt or non-exempt from overtime pay is a difficult one, as there are many exemptions with detailed requirements.
Next, if an employee has confirmed that they are non-exempt, he or she must determine how many hours were worked in a single workweek (employers may not average two separate workweeks). According to the FLSA, all work done for an employer is to be considered when calculating overtime pay. There are many actions that could be considered eligible hours worked, including time working, traveling, being on-call, waiting, training, preparing, and time spent eating or sleeping.
Finally, employers are required to pay at least one-and-a-half times the regular hourly rate for all hours worked over 40 hours per week. We have created a resource to determine this; an online overtime calculator that allows you to easily calculate overtime pay based on FLSA regulations.
We encourage you to calculate your own pay and to regularly check whether you are being properly remunerated for your hard work. Though the FLSA sets national laws for overtime pay, each state has different overtime laws, so it is important to become familiar with the ones that apply to you.
Companies often engage in complex schemes to avoid correctly compensating their employees for overtime, and therefore many have been unfairly stripped of deserved benefits. If you believe that you may have been unjustly withheld overtime pay, contact a committed overtime attorney to determine if you are eligible to file a lawsuit to recover lost wages.