Overtime Pay Labor Law

Overtime Pay Requirements of the FLSA 

–Report Unpaid Overtime –

What Is Overtime?

Overtime is the amount of time someone works beyond normal working hours. For covered, nonexempt employees, the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) requires overtime pay at a rate of not less than one and one-half times an employee’s regular rate of pay after 40 hours of work in a workweek. The U.S. Department of Labor Employment Standards Administration Overtime Fact Sheet entitled Overtime Pay Requirements of the FLSA states that “An employer who requires or permits an employee to work overtime is generally required to pay the employee premium pay for such overtime work.”

Unless specifically exempted, employees covered by the FLSA must receive overtime pay for hours worked in excess of 40 in a workweek at a rate not less than time and one-half their regular rates of pay. There is no limit in the FLSA on the number of hours employees age 16 and older may work in any specific workweek.

The FLSAt applies on a workweek basis. An employee’s workweek is a fixed and regularly recurring period of 168 hours — seven consecutive 24-hour periods.  The work week need not coincide with the calendar week, but may begin on any day and at any hour of the day. Different workweeks may be established for different employees or groups of employees.

Averaging of hours over two or more weeks, however, is not permitted. Normally, overtime pay earned in a particular workweek must be paid on the regular pay day for the pay period in which the wages were earned.

The regular rate of pay cannot be less than the minimum wage. The regular rate includes all remuneration for employment except certain payments excluded by the FLSA itself.  Payments which are not part of the regular rate include pay for expenses incurred on the employer’s behalf, premium payments for overtime work or the true premiums paid for work on Saturdays, Sundays, and holidays, discretionary bonuses, gifts and payments in the nature of gifts on special occasions, and payments for occasional periods when no work is performed due to vacation, holidays, or illness.

Earnings under the FLSA may be determined on a piece-rate, salary, commission, or some other basis, but in all such cases the overtime pay due must be computed on the basis of the average hourly rate derived from such earnings.  The employee’s regular rate of pay is calculated by dividing the total pay for employment (except for the statutory exclusions set forth above) in any workweek by the total number of hours actually worked by the employee.

Some exceptions to the 40 hours per week standard apply under special circumstances to police officers and firefighters employed by public agencies and to employees of hospitals and nursing homes.

Federal Overtime Labor Law Versus State Overtime Labor Law

Some states also have enacted state-specific overtime laborlaws.  Where an employee is subject to both the state and federal overtime labor laws, the employee is entitled to overtime according to the higher standard (i.e., the standard that will provide the higher rate of pay).

–Report Unpaid Overtime –

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35 Responses to “Overtime Pay Labor Law”

  1. JOHN RUGGIERO says:

    My question to you is, my regular scheduled work week is 48hr the first week which = 8hrs of overtime pay, followed by a 36hr work week the next, which is all straight pay.
    P.S: I’m paid biweekly, so I would be paid 76hrs of straight pay, and 8hrs of overtime for those two weeks.
    Also the company that I work for gives the employees a number of hours for vacation depending how long you worked for the company.
    So my main question to you is, if I take vacation on the week that I’m scheduled to work 48hrs. Should I be paid 8hrs overtime if the company is making me use 48hrs of vacation time?
    The company is saying no it will be paid as 48hrs of straight pay not overtime, since the calculation of vacation hrs don’t count towards the calculation of overtime pay.
    If that’s the case I should only have to use 40hrs of vacation time not 48hrs that week,
    Once again the company is saying no you must use 48hrs of vacation hrs. And be paid 48hrs of straight pay.

  2. rhonda jones says:

    I worked 44 hours in a 7 day period was I entitled to overtime pay?

  3. Judy says:

    I work in a hotel some days I waitress on other I bartend and then I also work the front desk. I recieve a different wage for each dept. now if I work over 40 hours combined in the three depts. what is the law on overtime pay?

  4. richard says:

    i used to be paid overtime for any time over 40,now they have [drive time]they pick or choose what hours are considered drive time so i never reach 40 hrs.drive time is 10.00/normal is 15.00/they pick or choose what is drive/shop time to determin how much they want to pay each employee is this legal?

  5. Max says:

    I work for a large famous brand name company. My question is that in the past at about the last quarter of the year my supervisor would tell us not to log more than 40hrs.a week. My guess is to not go over budget for the year. Unaware of the laws myself I have work overtime nessary to accomplish the work load. On my time card I would write in the actual time in and out and total it at only 8hrs per day 40/week. I did this to let my supervisor know true time it took me to accomplish my tasks. I continued to do this for sometime until my supervisor noticed that the hrs. add up and told me I couldn’t do that. I didn’t do it anymore but I also wasn’t paid for the overtime that was actual worked. Do thay oue me?

  6. Carol says:

    I work for a Credit Union there are no time clocks. The company schedules people 42.5 hours every week. They give you 1 hour for lunch saying half is paid and the other half isn’t. They have what they call work hours and scheduled hours, they don’t count the half hour of your lunch that you don’t get paid for towards worked hours. So if they call a meeting and you have to be there an hour early you don’t get paid for it because they say that you are only working 37.5 hours even though you are scheduled 42.5 is this fair practice?

  7. Julia says:

    My husband is a piping designer, creating piping plans for major oil producers. His company pays him an hourly wage. Recently he was told that all overtime hours are to be paid straight time rather than at time and a half. Is this legal?

  8. Dawn says:

    I am non-exempt but our policy is if you work overtime you are forced to take comp time and we are required to be on call 24hrs a day we are provided with a company phone and are told to answer at anytime to work, I want to know if I have a case

  9. Lottie Roseman says:

    I work security or this dept store,and I WOR TWO 17HR. DAYS IN A ROW I WAS TOLD THAT IF Iworked 17 hrs I WAS TO be paided overtime afte 8hrs.

  10. Missy says:

    I am exempt I work 9.5 hrs per day. I am force to carry a phone and answer it at all times. I have to work duty once a month that week I am forced to work 7 days. Is this legal.

  11. REBECCA says:

    my employer gave me araise after 30days. however the manager refused to pass it along to hr,so 6mo later im still waiting. what are my options. also when i quit i gave 6 days notice, i should have had 52 hours,my paycheck was 16 hours!! they said its becuz i didnt give 2 wks and they had to cover my shifts. where can i get info on this matter. im confused, they should at least warn people. ive never heard of this “law”

  12. Sandy says:

    I work in Puerto Rico. I have time cards that prove that I worked for 91.5 hours in the past two weeks. I was paid for 88. None of these were overtime. Is this legal?

  13. Anthony says:

    Can the manufacture company in Colorado require me to work 60 hours per week (12 hours per day)?? Can I be fired because I refuse to work these hours?

  14. Jody King says:

    i am a salaried employee. my title is plant superintendent but i work just like the hourly employees. most work weeks are around 60 hrs per week, should i be paid overtime pay as well

  15. Tony vila says:

    I’ve been hired at 18k a year salary. my employer has no problem making me stay late. Or asking me to come in on a weekend which are my days off. He pays me no overtime. I regularly stay 1 to 2 hrs over my leaving time with no compensation.Is this legal.?

  16. Jean says:

    My husband works for a big department store. He is paid salary for 48hrs. He very very rarely comes close to working that. This week he is up to 60 hrs and he still has another day to work. Is this legal? What are his rights. He has health issues and this is wearing him down a lot after doing this for 20 some odd years he is getting to the point he can’t do it anymore.

  17. Sandra says:

    I work for a company..we hand out temp work assignments to workers…I work any where from 46- 60 hours a week and required to do all the work done in our office while the manager takes credit and changes my hours in the computer before summitting to payroll department for my pay. We get paid every 2 weeks. so on average we are talking a 120 work period for me. I have in the last 2 months started coping my original clock in and out hours for proof..but for the first 1 and half months i didnt think to do this. I know i worked even more hours in those weeks also. How am I to prove see where this manager has changed my hours and can someone go into the computer and see in managers log that he has. I know I worked for corp company in past and they had access to see this if we changed employees time

  18. demetrius says:

    i worked in the gas oilfeild. i got payed overtime by the day 118 reg and 40 overtime my paiddays was 1 and 16 is this legal

  19. Kevin says:

    I am a Manager in a Hotel and when working overtime I do not receive any compensation for this – No Pay and no days off in lieu, especially when having worked double shifts. I have been told that as a manager it is expected of you and thats just too bad. I do not expect salary compensation however as with working public holidays we get a day off in lieu of this, I too expect a day off when working a double shift.
    Could anyone assist me in finding out the correct law for this ?


  20. Sharon Crawford Cole says:

    Instead of getting a raise i received a 3% bonus on my base hourly pay. As of November 20, 2009 i have worked 335.63 overtime hours i did not get paid for. People who received a 3% increase get paid for their overtime and i think i should also.

  21. Kim says:

    If a person takes a vacation day during the week and then works 35 hours during that week, are they entitled to 3 hours overtime?

  22. jeff says:

    I work in retail as a non exempt mgr. Im scheduled close then open workng me 14hrs in 24 hr period id that over time over 8hrs in one 24hr period? I work overnights and my boss will have me stay late and say just take a 2hr lunch. However I cannot leave the building is that overtime worthy? The tasks I perform while on break are minimal but I’m still in the building for 12 hrs a day.

  23. John M. Neill says:

    employer forces me to use overtime hours accumulated during work week to make up my forty hr week is this legal

  24. alphonso mcduffy says:

    I worked 8am-430pm mon. thru fri. at the shop for a towing company and on call 430pm – 7am 6 days a week am i supposed too recieved overtime pay for being on called since my home is now the officed and that where i get dispatch from.

  25. cristiane says:

    My husband works in a company’s salary, the more often the time,the company requires him to work unsocial hours, night and weekends, and claim that he works the salary and not have to pay overtime, and this legal?

  26. robert says:

    I work a 40 hr work week and once a month i am on call from 8am to 8pm saturday and sunday and i dot not get paid for this, is this legal? shouldnt i be getting paid overtime pay or some sort of pay??

  27. robert says:

    I work a 40 hr work week and get paid hourly and once a month i am on call from 8am to 8pm saturday and sunday (hours that salon is open) and i dont not get paid for this, is this legal? shouldnt i be getting paid overtime pay or some sort of pay??

  28. Summer says:

    i work at a privatly owend child care center, which is a chain. I was initially hired at one center and depending on the schedule would work at either center. (less than 10 miles apart) and at the end of the pay period recieved one check. They recently began giving us two checks, as they seperated the payroll for each center. we are still scheduled for both centers but have been told that we cannot combine hours worked at both centers to apply as overtime. In years past we were given one w2. I’m not sure if they somehow have found a loop hole and now we work 2 jobs and will get 2 w2’s this year, but it just seems fishy

  29. Doreen says:

    Is it legal in the state of AZ. for an employer to give you several 24 hr. shifts (personal care attendant,PCA) and only pay you $150.00 per shift. This works out to be less than min. wage. No one told me until after I received my pay check that, that was how it works

  30. Alva says:

    Is there any recourse for a person that was fired for working extra hours that they were not paid for?

  31. Daryld says:

    I am a Sheriff Deputy in Colorado. We were notified that any overtime hours earned in a pay period (1 month) where we take vacation will be paid as straight time. We are paid on a 168 hour work month. Also we have to be oncall 1 to 2 days a month for from 5:30- 7:00 Can be AM or PM depending on shift. This stanby time is not compensated at all. Is this right or wrong.

  32. Kathryn Simpson says:

    Is it legal for employees to work more than 6 hours without at least a 15 min break? Is it legal for an employer to expect you to work on a recognized holiday such as Christmas or Thanksgiving with NO compensation pay, such as time and a half or a day off in lieu? Where are the labor unions in this country? There appears to be so much abuse of people/employees and little that can be done. If you complain, an employer will soon FIND fault with your work to enable dismissal and since we all need jobs to pay bills, we often simply keep our mouths shut… employers know people are desperate for work and jobs are not as easily found as perhaps they once were, but it is creating a lot of abuse and leaving employees with little recourse. I hope someone has replied to the many questions from people on this site, and someone will reply to mine. Thank you.

  33. eric says:

    I am working at least 50 hours in a 5 day period and I’m being told that my overtime will be given to me as comp time. I feel this is very wrong! As of two weeks ago I was also told that I would get overtime at time and a half and got nothing but my forty hours of pay. Wrong again?! I work for a very small company. Can something be done so my employer gets the message about how overtime works without them knowing it came from me?

  34. Glenda says:

    At my job we get paid on the 5 and 20. Time goes in on the last day of the month and the 15. My last check had 82 hours and I thought I was looking at OT but they told me since there is an extra day in the pay period OT is after 88 hours. I really need to know if this can be done….email me glendalamb23@gmail.com

  35. Marc says:

    I drive a tow truck (flatbed). I work 70 hrs a week. 6 days. 4 10hr shifts and 2 15hr shifts. I get a 1hr dinner break during my 15hr shift. There are 11 drivers that work at least 60hrs a week. Is the towing co. following the law?

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