As lawyers for the workers, we make sure that employers pay you for the long hours you put in and give you the wages you are owed.
If you are a salaried employee and have been denied the wages that are rightfully due to you, it is important to understand your legal rights and remedies. Unpaid wage claims can occur in many different situations, including when an employer fails to pay the full amount of salary owed or fails to pay the correct rate of overtime compensation. In most cases, employees are entitled to back wages for any unpaid amount, plus additional damages. In certain circumstances, state and federal laws provide special remedies that may be available to an employee who has suffered from unpaid wages or salary.
At Josephson Dunlap, we represent salaried workers in unpaid wage claims nationwide. We dedicate 100% of our practice to wage and hour claims and have helped more than 100,000 clients protect their rights. Our team has recovered hundreds of millions of dollars in unpaid wages and overtime; we have the resources to help you fight back against unjust and wrongful employer conduct.
“Filing a case was easy and the staff was beyond wonderful when it came to answering my questions in regards to my case. They’re polite, well spoken and overall professional.”- Robert F. Straight Time for Overtime
“I have made multiple recommendations for Josephson Dunlap to family and friends. They kept me updated with my case, provided ongoing follow-up support, and made sure I received everything that was owed to me!”- Samantha R. Off-The-Clock Case
“Josephson Dunlap did everything that could be asked. They were great communicators and treated me with respect. They fought for me and delivered results that were better than expected.”- Tony S. Misclassification Case
Before filing a formal claim with your employer or the court system, it is important to first understand relevant wage and hour laws. These laws are created to protect employees and specify minimum standards of pay that employers must adhere to. It is important to familiarize yourself with applicable state, federal, and local laws governing unpaid wages and salary to ensure your rights under the law have not been violated.
Generally speaking, salaried workers have the right to receive their wages and salary in full, as well as overtime compensation (when applicable). Overtime laws vary from state to state, but in most cases, non-exempt salaried employees are entitled to overtime pay at a rate of one-and-a-half times their normal rate of pay for every hour worked beyond 40 hours in a single workweek. In some states, like California, non-exempt employees are also eligible for overtime when they work more than 8 hours in a single workday.
It is important that you understand the specific wage and hour laws in your state. If you have questions about your rights or your salaried worker unpaid wages claim, reach out to Josephson Dunlap today.
Exempt vs. Non-Exempt Employees
There are two main classes of employees: exempt and non-exempt employees.Here's a breakdown of their distinctions:
- Exempt Employees:
- Salary Basis: Exempt employees are typically paid on a salary basis, receiving a fixed amount of pay regardless of the number of hours worked.
- Exemption from Overtime: They are exempt from receiving overtime pay for any hours worked beyond the standard workweek (which is often defined as 40 hours in many jurisdictions). Even if they work more than 40 hours, they do not receive additional compensation for overtime.
- Job Duties: Exempt status is usually tied to the type of work an employee performs. Certain job roles, such as executive, administrative, professional, and some outside sales positions, might qualify for exempt status based on specific criteria outlined by labor laws.
- Higher Salary Threshold: There might be a minimum salary requirement for exempt status. For instance, in the United States, the Department of Labor sets a minimum salary threshold that employees must meet to be considered exempt from overtime pay under certain exemptions.
- Non-Exempt Employees:
- Hourly or Salaried Basis: Non-exempt employees can be paid either on an hourly or a salaried basis. If they are paid hourly, they are entitled to receive overtime pay for any hours worked beyond the standard workweek.
- Overtime Eligibility: They are eligible for overtime pay, usually set at a rate of 1.5 times their regular pay rate, for any hours worked beyond the defined standard workweek or workday as per labor laws.
- Job Duties: Non-exempt status isn't tied to specific job roles but rather to the hourly pay structure and the absence of meeting certain exemption criteria.
Unpaid Wage Claims from Salaried Employees
Unpaid wage claims among salaried workers can arise from various situations where they feel their compensation doesn't align with labor laws or their employment agreements. Here are some common scenarios leading to such claims:
- Overtime Pay Disputes: Salaried employees who are misclassified as exempt from overtime pay might work more than the standard workweek without receiving the appropriate overtime compensation. If their job duties don't meet the legal criteria for exemption, they could file claims for unpaid overtime.
- Minimum Wage Violations: Even though salaried workers receive fixed pay, if their salary, when divided by the hours worked, falls below the minimum wage threshold, it's considered a violation of minimum wage laws. Employees can file claims for the difference between what they were paid and the minimum wage for the hours worked.
- Unlawful Deductions: Employers are generally not allowed to make deductions from a salaried employee's pay except under specific circumstances permitted by law. If unauthorized or improper deductions are made, such as deductions for partial-day absences, employees may file claims for the withheld wages.
- Failure to Pay Promised Compensation: This includes unpaid bonuses, commissions, or promised incentives outlined in the employment contract or agreements. If an employer fails to fulfill these obligations, salaried workers can file claims for the unpaid amounts.
- Final Paycheck Issues: Upon termination, employees are entitled to receive their final paycheck promptly, including any accrued vacation time or other earned benefits. Disputes arise if an employer delays or fails to provide this compensation.
- Off-the-Clock Work: Salaried employees might be asked or expected to work outside their regular hours without additional compensation. If this work is not accounted for in their salary or if they're compelled to work off the clock, employees can file claims for unpaid wages for the additional hours worked.
Employees can file these claims with labor departments, wage and hour agencies, or pursue legal action to recover the owed compensation. It's crucial to keep records of hours worked, pay stubs, contracts, and any communications regarding compensation to support these claims. The specific labor laws and regulations of the region where the employee works will govern the process and potential resolution of these claims.
Why You Should Work with an Experienced Salaried Worker Unpaid Wages Attorney
Unfortunately, many employers fail to comply with hour and wage laws, leading to unpaid wages for salaried employees. It is important for all salaried workers to understand their legal rights when it comes to unpaid overtime claims.
If you believe your employer owes you overtime pay, you should:
- Review applicable state, federal, and local laws pertaining to wages and hours
- Determine whether your rights have been violated by your employer
- Keep copies of all communication with your employer and other relevant evidence
- Notify your employer in writing of the mistake/unpaid wages or overtime
- File a wage claim with the Labor Board or another appropriate agency
- Seek the assistance of a skilled and knowledgeable unpaid wage attorney
We strongly advise you to contact our team as soon as possible. At Josephson Dunlap, we work quickly in initiating legal action and carefully develop evidence-based claims aimed at maximizing our clients’ recoveries. The sooner you get in touch with our team, the sooner we can begin preparing your case.
What Evidence Is Needed to Prove a Salaried Worker Unpaid Overtime Claim?
Your employer is almost certain to fight back against your claim. Often, employers dispute unpaid wage claims by arguing that the worker was not classified as an employee, or that they were exempt from overtime pay based on state or federal laws. Your employer may have misclassified your employment status in an effort to avoid paying you overtime, or they may have pressured you to work off the clock.
In any case, you need an experienced and reliable legal team by your side. When you choose Josephson Dunlap, that is exactly what you get. Our firm is driven by a singular goal: to help workers secure the fair wages they are owed. We are laser-focused on this goal, and everything we do is aimed at helping our clients protect their rights and push back against employer misconduct.
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