An Alabama unpaid overtime lawsuit may be an option for hourly and salaried employees, as well as certain contractors, who work over 40 hours per week. Federal law states that employers must pay at least one and one-half times the regular rate of pay in overtime pay to their employees. An Alabama unpaid wages lawyer may be able to help an employee recover the compensation he or she deserves.
For more information, contact Attorney Group for Alabama today. Our consultations are free, confidential and without any obligation on your part. We can help answer your questions, and if you choose to pursue a claim we can connect you with an affiliated Alabama unpaid overtime lawsuit attorney who can assist you throughout the legal process.
What is Overtime?
Overtime is the amount of time an employee works beyond normal working hours. Most nations, including the United States, have laws designed to prevent employers from making their employees work excessively long hours. In the U.S., the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) establishes a standard work week of no more than 40 hours per week and mandates payment for overtime hours at a rate of no less than one and one-half times their regular rate of pay.
Who is Eligible for Overtime Pay?
Under federal law, “non-exempt” employees are eligible to receive overtime pay. “Exempt” employees must generally meet certain criteria pertaining to their job duties and be paid no less than $455 per week. According to the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL), the salary threshold for exempt employees was set to increase to $913 per week beginning December 1, 2016. However, on November 22, 2016, a U.S. District Court Judge in Texas granted an Emergency Motion for Preliminary Injunction, halting the implementation of the ruling. On December 1, 2016, the Department of Justice filed an appeal on behalf of the DOL.
If My Employer Calls Me an Independent Contractor, Do I Get Overtime?
In some cases, employers will try to avoid overtime laws by classifying their employees as “independent contractors.” Unlike an employee, an independent contractor does not work regularly for a particular employer and are usually paid on a freelance basis. There are some cases, however, where an employee is not an independent contractor just because an employer says they are. In that case, the employee may be eligible for overtime pay.
Commonly misclassified independent contractor jobs include:
- Tow truck drivers
- Call center workers
- Couriers and package delivery workers
- Truck drivers
- Port workers
When workers are misclassified, they are robbed of their individual rights and benefits. Likewise, misclassification negatively impacts the effective administration of federal and state programs and creates unfair competition for law-abiding employers.
Unpaid Overtime Lawsuits
According to a DOL news release published in 2015, investigators from the agency’s Wage and Hour Division’s Mobile District Office found that an Alabama company violated the overtime provisions of the FLSA. Specifically, investigators discovered that the staffing agency illegally labeled a portion of workers’ regular wages as per diem payments so that they could exclude those wages when figuring overtime premiums. As a result of the unpaid overtime lawsuit, the company agreed to comply with the FLSA and pay 218 employees back wages totaling nearly $134,000.
Additionally, several lawsuits have been filed against Uber, a ride-share company available in over 400 cities worldwide. According to a motion filed with the Judicial Panel of Multidistrict Litigation in December 2015, there are at least five related actions filed in five federal district courts against Uber Technologies Inc. and Raiser, LLC (Uber). These actions make similar allegations concerning Uber’s misclassification of drivers, failure to remit gratuities, and violation of other state labor and common laws.
What Are My Options When I’m Not Paid Overtime That I’m Owed?
In addition to being able to initiate a claim through the DOL, workers who have been unlawfully denied overtime pay may file an Alabama unpaid overtime lawsuit with the help of an unpaid wages lawyer. In those cases, the employee may pursue damages for back wages not paid by the employer and liquidated damages in an amount equal to the unpaid back wages. In some cases, the employer may be required to pay the employee’s attorney fees for bringing action to recover lost wages.
How an Alabama Unpaid Overtime Lawsuit Can Help
Federal law, and many state laws, require employers to pay employees for overtime at a rate of not less than 1.5 times their regular rate of pay. These same laws protect underpaid workers from retaliation if they pursue a claim, and an unpaid wages lawyer can help an employee recover the compensation he or she deserves.
The Time You Have to Pursue a Claim is Limited. Contact Us Today.
For more information, contact Attorney Group for Alabama. You can fill out the form on this page or contact us by phone or email.
After you contact us, an attorney will follow up to answer questions that you might have. There is no cost or obligation to speak with us, and any information you provide will be kept confidential.
Please note that the law limits the time you have to pursue a claim or file a lawsuit for an injury. If you think you have a case, you should not delay taking action.