You work long nights, you work weekends, but your weekly salary never changes. Perhaps you include the overtime hours you work on your timesheet but your boss ignores this or even changes your hours to avoid paying you for those additional hours.
Now, you’ve missed out on time with your family and other life commitments and you have no additional money to show for it.
Or maybe you’re a waiter and you’ve had a few slow nights at the restaurant. Your hourly wage, including your tips, averaged out to less than $7.25 per hour and now you cannot afford rent.
Or maybe you’re a new mother and your employer prevents you from breastfeeding or pumping milk at work. During your long, continuous work hours, you have no way to satisfy this biological need. If you have not been compensated for the hours you have worked you may have the basis for an employment claim and should consult with a Virginia pay and overtime attorney. Our attorneys can help prepare you and ensure you know what to expect.
Under the Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”), your employer must pay you additional compensation for any hours you work after forty hours for a particular work week. Your employer must also pay you at least the federal minimum wage. Additionally, if you are a new mother, your employer must provide you a reasonable location and length of time to express breast milk.
Depending on what state you work in, your state’s laws can guarantee you additional protections but can not mandate a lower level of protection than you are guaranteed under the FLSA.
The FLSA only applies to employers with annual sales that exceed $500,000 or to companies that engage in interstate commerce. Although this may seem to only apply to large companies, courts have interpreted the term “interstate commerce” broadly.
Some examples of companies that engage in “interstate commerce” under the FLSA include companies that regularly use the USPS to send or receive letters from another state or use company phones or computers to conduct business with someone in another state.
The FLSA applies to all employees UNLESS you fall into one the following exemptions:
If you are a covered, nonexempt employee, the FLSA requires your employer to provide you:
The Spiggle Law Firm (TSLF) represents clients across five states and covers a variety of employment law practice areas. Since opening its doors in 2009, TSLF has negotiated millions in wrongful employment settlements and become a trusted and respected advocate for those facing discrimination, retaliation, and harassment in the workplace.
Your direct wage must be at least $2.13 per hour. Additionally, your wages combined with your tips must still equal at least $7.25 per hour. Otherwise, your employer must pay the difference. Additionally, unless your restaurant uses a tip pooling system or sharing arrangement, your employer must allow you to retain all of the tips you earned each day.
The FLSA does not apply to independent contractors. However, courts generally interpret the term “independent contractor” narrowly, so that the protections of federal law apply to as many people as possible.
The most important factor the court will consider is whether you are employed by a single employer. If almost all of your income comes from a single employer, the court will likely find that you are an employee, and thus entitled to the protections of the FLSA.
Some other factors the court will consider is whether the relationship with your employer is permanent, whether you lacked the bargaining power to negotiate the terms of your employment, and whether you were economically dependent on your employer. If your answer to any of these questions is “yes,” then you are likely not an independent contractor.
A final consideration that a Virginia pay and overtime lawyer must take into account is whether your job requires any special skills or earns particularly high compensation. In this case, the court is more likely to find that you are an independent contractor and that the FLSA does not apply to you.
The FLSA applies to you regardless of your citizenship status. Your employer cannot evade your rights to federal protection by threatening to report your undocumented status to the government.
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The FLSA applies to domestic workers, including housekeepers, gardeners, childcare workers and chauffeurs, as long as you make at least $1,000 in wages from a single employer in one year or as long as you work at least eight hours in one week for one or several employers. Accordingly, the FLSA would likely apply to you if you are a fulltime au pair, but not if you babysat for one night.
Although some employers provide various forms of paid time off, unfortunately, the FLSA does not require your employer to compensate you for time off, including vacations, holidays or sick days.
Unfortunately, the FLSA does not require your employer to pay you extra compensation for hours you work on weekends, holidays, or regularly scheduled time-off, unless the hours you worked would be overtime.
If your employer takes adverse employment action against you for filing an FLSA claim, you can file a lawsuit for reinstatement to your position, lost wages and damages with the help of a Virginia pay and overtime lawyer.