The Federal Fair labor Standards Act sets standards for basic minimum wage and overtime pay and regulates practices of most public and private employers. In addition, California wage and hour lawsfurther define how employers are required to treat their employees. Employment status is based on such factors as the type of work employees do, their responsibilities and rate of pay.
Classification of employees determines whether they are eligible for overtime pay and other rights. Employees may be classified as hourly or non-exempt; or may be considered salaried, and thus exempt from the payment of overtime. Not all salaried employees are exempt, however. Employees must fit one of the following criteria in order to be correctly classified as exempt: executive, administrative, professional, outside sales, inside sales, or computer professional.
To determine whether an employee is correctly classified, rate of compensation as well as duties and level of authority must meet certain established criteria. As an exempt employee, because of your duties and level of authority you are exempt from overtime provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). You may have more flexibility in your schedule than hourly employees in your company, but you likely are expected to work whatever hours are necessary to accomplish your job.
Many companies deliberately misclassify employees to avoid paying overtime. The larger the company, the more likely it is that many employees are not receiving lawful compensation. Wage and Hour class action disputes are among the most common labor suits, with numbers rising dramatically in the past decade.
Under California law, workers may receive up to 4 years of back pay restitution if their employer failed to properly compensate their overtime. If you and your colleagues suspect you have been misclassified as exempt by your employer, you may be entitled to back pay. Contact an experienced class action employment lawyer at the Law Offices of Aiman-Smith & Marcy to learn whether your case is suitable for class action.