What’s The Fair Labor Standards Act?
FLSA (Fair Labor Standards Act) was ordained to maintain minimum wage for employees and overtime compensations. FLSA classified employees into two groups; exempt and non- exempt employees. FLSA standards are based on the category an employee falls into. Beside FLSA there are other legal standards that apply to employers and employees concerning minimum wage and overtime standards.
Some state legislatures don’t particularly rely on the FLSA standards; they have their own labor standards based in their states. Some have imposed higher minimum wage and overtime compensations. They might also have strict rules regarding child labor, and every employer within the state must adhere to those standards. FLSA is mainly concerned with federal wages that deal with non-exempt employees that work for employers.
The Current Minimum Wage Standard
As of now the federal government has imposed $7.25/hours for employees without earning tips and $2.13 for employees that earn tips beside their hourly minimum wage. This minimum rate is mandatory for every employer to pay their employees, no employee should accept below the minimum wage and it is illegal by law for any employer to offer any rate below the minimum wage endorsed by the federal government.
Are There Minimum Employees In Order To Comply With FLSA Standards?
There isn’t any provision that allow employers to exempt from the FLSA standards. Even though some do believe that you have to employ certain number of employees before FLSA standards can apply.
There are however certain cases where the employer doesn’t have to comply with FLSA, that is the employer can exempt minimum wage & and overtime, or can only exempt an employee from overtime benefits only.
The department of labor requires that every employer should classify an employee as either exempt or non-exempt. But you have to careful as to classify everyone according without misplacing employees into the wrong category.
If you misplace an employee into the wrong category you might have to compensate them for any forfeited wages due to your negligence of incorrect misplacement. You may also face criminal prosecution and a fine that’s up to $10,000 or sometimes only $1000.
Classification of employees as either exempt or non-exempt depends on the following factors;
* The amount you have been compensated.
* How you have been compensated.
* The type of job you provide to your current employer.
An exempt employee must earn a minimum of $23,600 annually; there might be some exceptions to this rule. As an exempt employee you must however abide by the rule of FLSA. They must also pass the 3 tests governed by the FLSA. Finally if you’re earning more than $100,000 annual compensation, you also fall into exempt employee.
If an employee fails to meet the 3 part test under FLSA, he’ll be classified as non-exempt employee. The minimum wage and overtime benefits vary for non-exempt employees. If you’re under 20 years, the minimum wage by the FLSA standard is $4.24/hour within the first 3 months of your employment. If your employer refuses to comply, then in some severe cases it can lead to imprisonment. So generally speaking if you earn less than $23,600 a year you’re likely to be placed as non-exempt employee.
FLSA have provided a lot of protection to employees but it did not state the exact amount of hours an employee has to spend daily or weekly. It is still required by each employer to pay for the extra hours and the amount should be at least 1.5x the standard of the hourly wage if an employee works for more than forty hours per week. If an employee however could not meet the minimum weekly hours, then employer will not be compelled to pay any overtime.
How To Deal With An Employer When He Violate Or Deny Your Rights
Talk to your employer and try to reason with him. An intelligent conversation most of the times can take care of the problem. Set your differences aside try to resolve the situation. Most employers don’t want to be part of any legal tangles.
Before talking to your employer take care of the following things;
* You Must Know Your Rights
Let your employer know that you know what you’re doing by telling him your FLSA rights, may be they’re accidentally doing wrong to you, it’s time to fix it.
* Tell Him The Facts
Tell your employer that you’re open for mutual resolution; outline the problem and how he can rectify the problem. Take note of all the things they’ve done with figures and date, it should be exact and accurate.
If things didn’t work out for both of you, now you can take legal action against your employer for violating your rights and you should keep all evidences intact and then move ahead to hire a lawyer to defend your case.