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Utah Unpaid Overtime
Have you worked more than 40 hours in a work week and not been paid overtime? Do you feel that your Utah employer has put you on salary as a way to get out of paying overtime? Are you required to do work-related activities while being clocked out? Has your employer improperly classified you as an independent contractor or a manager or executive to get out of paying overtime? Are you thinking of getting a Utah unpaid overtime lawyer or attorney involved to fix your problem?
Overtime is defined under Federal law in the Federal Labor Standards Act (FLSA), as compensation paid to an employee who works more than 40 hours in a work week. The amount to be paid for hours more than 40 is 1.5 times the normal hourly rate. For example, a Utah employee who makes $10 per hour should be paid $15 per hour for all hours over 40 worked in that work week. A workweek is defined by the FLSA as seven consecutive 24-hour periods, or 168 hours (24X7). The workweek can start on any day of the week .
Exempt Utah Employees (No Overtime Paid)
The following are a list of Utah employees who would be considered exempt from overtime pay requirements under the FLSA:
- Commissioned sales employees of a retail or service business if more than one-half of the employee’s earnings come from commissions and the employee makes over 1.5 times the going minimum wage;
- Computer professionals: Under the FLSA, section 13(a)(17), certain computer professionals who are paid at least $27.63 per hour are exempt from Federal overtime provisions;
- Drivers, driver’s helpers, loaders and mechanics are exempt from the overtime pay requirements of the FLSA if they are employed by a motor carrier, and if the employee’s duties affect the safety of operation of the vehicles in transporting people or goods across state lines;
- Farmworks that are employed on small farms are exempt overtime pay (as well as minimum wage provisions of the FLSA).
- Salesmen, partsmen and mechanics that are employed by auto dealerships are exempt;
- Seasonal and recreational businesses: these employees are exempt from overtime and minimum wage laws;
- Executive, administrative, professional and outside sales employees. Those that fit in this category are exempt from receiving overtime.
Non-Exempt Utah Employees (Overtime Paid)
Non-management or “blue-collar” Utah employees, on hourly or salary pay, are typically entitled to overtime. “White-collar” type employees who make less than $455 per week are also typically eligible for overtime in Utah. In figuring overtime, job titles are not relevant. Overtime pay eligibility is based on occupation, wages and job duties. Other exemptions may apply, and you should check with a Utah overtime lawyer if you have questions about your specific job.
Utah employees are underpaid when their employer “misclassifies” them as being exempt so as to avoid paying overtime. This is called overtime misclassification. For example, a Utah employer should not be calling a lower-level employee a “manager” if that person has no real managerial duties. Federal law will look to see what the employee actually does versus what they may be called.
Federal law mandates Utah employers to pay overtime if they call in employees who might have been on “standby” and they end up working more than 40 hours in a workweek. Federal law also will generally mandate the Utah employer to pay for required training if this exceeds 40 hours a week, as well as “preparation” time, such as putting on a company uniform there at the facility, inspecting their patrol car, checking items in or out, or simply doing company-related paperwork.
Some Utah employers give “comp” time in place of overtime that the employee might be entitled to. These Utah employers violate the FLSA, however, as the employee is in essence only getting 1x their normal hourly rate.
Finally, in this economy, a Utah employee may be reluctant to complain about any unpaid overtime they might have. They may be worried that they will lose their jobs. Federal law, however, will protect the employee by making it illegal for a Utah employer to retaliate against an employee who exercises their rights under the FLSA. While this restriction against retaliation may not actually prevent an employer from firing an employee, at the point that they do, then that employee also has an additional claim against them for retaliation.
If you have any further questions, please contact the Utah labor and unpaid wage attorneys at the Kramer Law Group at 801-553-8838 to discuss your specific case.