Legal recourse for unpaid overtime

On Behalf of | Jun 20, 2024 | Wage And Hour Laws |

When you work more than your scheduled hours, you deserve to receive fair payment for your time. However, not all employers comply with overtime laws. Understanding your legal recourse for unpaid overtime is crucial. 

Understanding overtime laws

The Fair Labor Standards Act sets the federal standard for overtime pay. Under this act, employers must pay eligible employees 1.5 times their regular rate for any hours worked over 40 in a workweek. 

Indiana also adheres to the Indiana Wage Claims Act for unpaid wage claims. If you win your case, you will receive back wages, attorney fees, and additional payment.

Common overtime pay issues

Overtime pay issues are often not due to malicious intent. There are many simple issues that lead to overtime pay discrepancies. Understanding these issues can help you determine if your employer is underpaying you.

Employers may incorrectly classify employees as exempt from overtime pay. This frequently leads to unpaid overtime. Additionally, overtime pay should include bonuses and commissions. Sometimes employers fail to consider these factors. Employers must also accurately track all hours worked. This includes time spent on work-related tasks outside of normal hours.

Steps to recover unpaid overtime

If you believe your employer owes you unpaid overtime wages, here are steps you can take to recover them:

  1. Review your employment contract: Understand your rights and the company’s overtime policies. Note what your specific contract states about overtime.
  2. Document your hours: Keep a detailed record of the hours you worked. This should include dates, times, and any overtime hours.
  3. Calculate the amount owed: Calculate the amount of overtime pay you need to receive.
  4. Communicate with your employer: Approach your employer with your documentation and calculations. Often, a simple discussion can resolve the issue.

If your employer refuses to pay, take action. File a complaint with the U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division.

Ensuring fair compensation

If you need help recovering unpaid overtime, there are resources available. The Indiana Department of Labor offers resources for employees dealing with wage issues. They provide information on filing a complaint and wage claim forms. You may also consider seeking legal counsel for guidance tailored to your situation. Professionals specializing in employee representation can help you navigate compensation issues.

Taking proactive steps helps ensure that you receive fair compensation for your work. Keep thorough records and address any discrepancies promptly. By documenting your hours and acting immediately, you can resolve unpaid overtime issues. 


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