Over the last several years, the number of wage and hour lawsuits filed against employers has steadily increased. Federal lawsuits based on violations of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) may arise in a variety of situations, but are often based on an employer’s failure to minimum wage or overtime compensation as required by law.
The FLSA provides that all employees are entitled to by paid at least minimum wage and all non exempt employees must be paid overtime compensation at a rate of one and one half times their standard rate of pay for all time worked beyond 40 hours in any work week. Many times, these claims arise as the mischaracterization of employees as “exempt v. non-exempt” or the improper failure to pay workers for all time spent on the job (i.e. not paying employees for missed lunches/breaks, requiring workers perform pre- and post- clocked in duties without pay.)
Often, where one worker’s rights have been violated, other similarly situated employees have also been deprived rightful compensation. In these instances, it may be possible to bring a special type of lawsuit called a “collective action,” a particular type of FLSA class action that will help you bring the maximum pressure to bear on your employer to change its ways and to pay you all the compensation you are owed.