Month: November 2015

Which Employers are Covered by the Fair Labor Standards Act?

Diverse business group meeting

The Fair Labor Standards Act, which features the most important and most far-reaching law guaranteeing a worker’s right to be paid fairly, applies only to employers whose annual sales total $500,000 or more or who are engaged in interstate commerce.

You might think that this would restrict the FLSA to covering only employees in large companies, but, in reality, the law covers nearly all workplaces. This is because the courts have interpreted the term interstate commerce very broadly.

For example, courts have ruled that companies that regularly use the U.S. mail to send or receive letters to and from other states are engaged in interstate commerce. Even the fact that employees use company telephones or computers to place or accept interstate business calls or take orders has subjected an employer to the FLSA.

However, a few employers, including small farms, those that use relatively little outside paid labor, are explicitly exempt from the FLSA.

David Payab, Esq. from The Law Offices of Payab & Associates can be reached @ (800) 401-4466 or by visiting http://payablaw.com/

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What are the Restrictions on Child Labor?

What are Restrictions on Child Labor

Minors under 18 years old may not work in any jobs that are considered to be hazardous. This includes those minors involved in mining, wrecking and demolition, logging, and roofing.

To encourage minors under the age of 18 to stay in school rather than become overworking workers too soon, there are additional restrictions on when and how long workers between ages 14 and 16 may be employed in nonhazardous jobs including:

• They may work no more than three hours on a school day and no more than 18 hours in a school week.
• They may work no more than eight hours on a non-school day and no more than 40 hours in a non-school week.

However, it’s important to note that some industries have special exemptions from the legal restrictions on child labor. Youths of any age may deliver newspapers or perform in television, movie, or theatrical productions.

David Payab, Esq. from The Law Offices of Payab & Associates can be reached @ (800) 401-4466 or by visiting http://payablaw.com/

What is Compensatory Time and is it Legal?

What is Compensatory Time and is it Legal

Compensatory or comp time is the practice of employers offering employees time off from work in place of cash payments for overtime. It’s important to note that this is illegal in most situation.

Under the Fair Labor Standards Act, only state or government agencies may legally allow their employees time off in place of wages.

Even then, comp time may be awarded only:

• according to the terms of a collective bargaining unit agreement, or
• if the employer and employee agree to the arrangement before work begins.

David Payab, Esq. from The Law Offices of Payab & Associates can be reached @ (800) 401-4466 or by visiting http://payablaw.com/

What is Equal Pay for Equal Work?

What is Equal Pay for Equal Work

Equal pay for equal work means that men and women who do the same job or jobs that require equal skill and responsibility must be paid with equal wages and benefits under the law called the Equal Pay Act.

However, some payment schemes that may look discriminatory do not necessarily violate the Equal Pay Act. This law allows different payments to men and women if they are based on:

• Seniority systems
• Merit systems
• Systems measuring earnings by quantity or quality of production
• Or even salary differentials that come from unequal starting salaries

David Payab, Esq. from The Law Offices of Payab & Associates can be reached @ (800) 401-4466 or by visiting http://payablaw.com/

Does My Employer Have to Pay for My Time Off?

Does My Employer Have to Pay for My Time Off

Law does not require employers to pay employees for time off, such as vacation, holidays, or sick days. Although most employers provide full-time employees some paid time off each year, the Fair Labor Standards Act covers payment only for time spent at work.

However, some state laws, including California’s, require that employees get paid time off for jury duty, voting and family and medical leave. Also, a few states require employees to be paid for sick days or certain types of family leave, either by the employee or from a state fund.

Also, many state laws provide that if employers offer paid vacation days off, employees are entitled to be paid for the portion they have already earned when they quit or are fired.

David Payab, Esq. from The Law Offices of Payab & Associates can be reached @ (800) 401-4466 or by visiting http://payablaw.com/

Can My Employer Pay Me in Coupons or Employee Discounts?

Can My Employer Pay Me in Coupons or Employee Discounts

Under the Fair Labor Standards Pay, you as an employee may receive pay in the form of cash, checks, or something that can be readily converted into cash or other legal forms of compensation, such as food or housing.

However, your employer cannot pay you with a coupon or token that can be spent only at a store run by the employer. Also, employee discounts given by your employer do not count toward the minimum wage requirements.

David Payab, Esq. from The Law Offices of Payab & Associates can be reached @ (800) 401-4466 or by visiting http://payablaw.com/

Can Your Employer Pay You a Lower Hourly Rate for On Call Time?

Can Your Employer Pay You a Lower Hourly Rate for On Call Time

Yes, it is legal for your employer to pay you at a different rate for on-call time and regular work time.

You need to be sure that if your on-call time qualifies as “work,” you are entitled to be paid at least the minimum wage for it. However, there’s no legal requirement that your employer pay you the same amount you earn when doing other types of work.

For the most case, the issue over on-call time is whether it counts as work time at all. The law depends on whether you have the right to spend the time as you see fit or whether your employer has control over your time. The more restrictions placed on your time, and the more likely you are to have to actually work during your on-call time, the more likely you are entitled to be paid.

David Payab, Esq. from The Law Offices of Payab & Associates can be reached @ (800) 401-4466 or by visiting http://payablaw.com/

Does Time Spent Changing into Safety Gear Count as Work Time?

Does Time Spent Changing into Safety Gear Count as Work Time

The answer to the question to whether the time spent changing into safety gear counts as work time really depends on whether you are represented by a union and, if so, what your collective bargaining agreement says.

The Supreme Court has said that time spent “changing clothes” is a proper subject of collective bargaining. This means the union and the employer may negotiate how much, if any, of this time will count as work time, for which employees must be paid. The court found, the union could bargain away employees’ rights to be paid for the time they spent putting in on and taking it off.

If your workplace isn’t unionized, the rules may be different. For non-union employees, time spent putting on safety gear is treated differently from time spent changing clothes for convenience. The Supreme Court has found that time spent putting on protective gear that is required to do the job is compensable time; that is, it counts as hours worked, for which you must be paid.

David Payab, Esq. from The Law Offices of Payab & Associates can be reached @ (800) 401-4466 or by visiting http://payablaw.com/

Is it Legal to Keep Employees from Clocking In until the Manager Arrives?

Is it Legal to Keep Employees from Clocking In until the Manager Arrives

Let’s say your work starts at 7 am to restock the shelves. However, your manager shows up at 7:30 am when everyone officially clocks in. is it legal for the manager to keep you from clocking in until he or she arrives? This means that you’ll be working for half an hour and not getting paid. Is this fair?

As an employee, you’ll be happy to know that it is not legal to keep employees from clocking in until the manager arrives. This, in fact, is a form of wage theft, and you are entitled to wage damages.

Your employer is violating the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) which says that the employee has the right to be paid for any time they spend working.

The law takes these kinds of violations very seriously. Your employer owes you half an hour’s worth of pay for each day since this practice began. If this extra half hour puts you into overtime, your employer also owes the overtime premium. You are also likely entitled to penalties and interest on the wages you didn’t receive.

David Payab, Esq. from The Law Offices of Payab & Associates can be reached @ (800) 401-4466 or by visiting http://payablaw.com/