Michigan Unpaid Overtime Attorney
Michigan workers rightfully expect their employers to pay them fairly for their time, commitment, and effort. They also expect their employers to comply with the law when calculating how much they owe employees in wages for all that hard work. This includes paying them for overtime when required under state and federal law. All too often, however, companies try to shortchange employees out of overtime wages, either by not paying them for their extra time or by engaging in accounting tricks and other ploys to avoid their obligations. When they do so, they take money out of workers’ pockets.
The Michigan employment attorneys at Sommers Schwartz are fierce advocates for hard-working men and women who fall victim to wage theft by their employers. We hold companies accountable when they take advantage of workers by failing to pay required overtime. With experience, dedication, and a passion for protecting employees’ rights, our lawyers fight to get our clients every penny they earn as well as any other compensation and relief available.
Who Is Entitled to Overtime Pay?
The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) is the federal law that imposes minimum wage, overtime pay, and other requirements on most American employers. It provides that all “non-exempt” employees must receive one and a half times their regular wage for all hours worked over 40 in any workweek.
If you are not an “exempt” employee, you deserve overtime pay. Because of the nature of their job responsibilities – and the size of their paychecks – many salaried employees are exempt from FLSA’s overtime pay requirements. Several exemptions apply to salaried workers whose responsibilities involve executive, administrative, or professional duties and who make less than the threshold established by federal law.
But many workers with salaries on the lower end of the scale must receive overtime pay. Until 2020, the law required employers to pay overtime rates to all salaried workers whose primary job responsibilities involve “executive, administrative or professional” duties and whose salaries were lower than $23,660 per year – or $455 per week.
Under the new rule, which took effect on January 1, 2020, a worker can earn a salary of up to $35,568 per year – or $679 per week – and still be entitled to overtime pay.
Distinctions Between Michigan and Federal Overtime Laws
For the most part, Michigan’s overtime laws mirror those contained in the FLSA. However, there are a few significant differences. For example, under the FLSA, employers are only required to pay overtime wages if they have a gross income of $500,000 or more. However, in Michigan, the overtime wage law applies to all employers with two or more employees, regardless of annual revenue.
Ways Employers Cheat Workers Out of Overtime Pay
Unscrupulous employers often take advantage of the complexities involved in overtime pay requirements to cheat workers out of these earnings. They make a bet that most employees do not understand their overtime rights or will not have the time, inclination, or ability to call their employers out on overtime pay violations.
There are countless ways employers engage in wage theft involving overtime pay, including:
- Misclassifying salaried workers as exempt from overtime pay requirements.
- Misclassifying employees as independent contractors.
- Requiring employees to work “off the clock” at the start or end of the workday to keep their hours under 40 for a given week.
- Not including bonuses when calculating overtime rates.
- Intimidating workers into not recording all hours worked.
- Failing to keep accurate records of time worked.
- Not paying employees for time spent “on-call”
Sommers Schwartz, P.C: Allies and Advocates for Michigan Workers
If you believe that your employer is wrongfully depriving you of overtime pay or have questions about their wage and hour practices, please contact one of the employment attorneys at Sommers Schwartz today. We will listen to your story, evaluate your situation, and advise you of your options. We aggressively pursue claims for unpaid overtime and other wage and hour violations, and our efforts have put hundreds of thousands of dollars into the pockets of Michigan workers.
Please contact Sommers Schwartz today to arrange for your free initial consultation.