One of the biggest challenges for Georgia employers is whether to classify an employee as exempt or non-exempt. Non-exempt workers (those paid an hourly wage) are entitled to overtime pay and mandatory meal and rest breaks, but exempt employees (those paid a set salary) are not. This issue is at the heart of a wage and hour complaint filed against a cosmetics retailer on the west coast.
The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) requires Georgia employers to pay overtime to hourly employees. On occasion, an employee will file a wage and hour complaint against an employer, claiming that they were not paid the overtime they were due. Up until recently, companies that found themselves defending against lawsuits filed by employees after leaving an employer -- whether they left voluntarily or were terminated -- could raise the defense that the employee should have brought the discrepancy in pay to the company's attention prior to leaving.
The U.S. Supreme Court outlined the requirements of attaining class action status in one of its decisions. A U.S. District Court judge denied a group of Applebee's employees class action status based on an interpretation of the Supreme Court's decision. Georgia business owners may benefit from knowing that the Second U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals recently ruled that the judged erred and that the wage and hour complaint could receive class action status in accordance with the Supreme Court's decision.
Any Georgia business that has employees may end up being audited by the Department of Labor in 2015. The agency reports that it will be looking closely at how employees are classified and ensuring that employers are in compliance with wage and hour law. Most of the audits the agency conducts are in response to complaints filed by people looking for jobs and current employees. However, the reason for an audit is not often provided to a company.
College athletes here in Georgia draw large crowds to their sporting events just as they do in other states. The people around them, including many students, work at the events to earn money. The athletes, however, do not earn anything since sports are considered an extracurricular activity. Some people, however, feel that this violates the Fair Labor Standards Act since other college students are paid for the work they do at their colleges and universities and have filed a wage and hour complaint in federal court against the NCAA and the Division 1 schools around the country.
The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) governs when a Georgia employer is required to pay employees extra for hours worked over and above 40 hours in a work week. Not receiving overtime pay is a common complaint of many workers. Knowing the basics of who is entitled to time-and-a-half and when could help companies avoid such complaints.
Georgia businesses must be careful when it comes to wage and hour laws. The difference between nonexempt and exempt employees confuses many companies and employees alike. Knowing the difference could save everyone involved time and money lost due to a wage and hour complaint.
Many Georgia business people are familiar with and may be members of LinkedIn. What they may not know is that a wage and hour complaint was filed against the company. Recently, the company was ordered to reimburse unpaid overtime and other damages to employees to the tune of nearly $6 million.
Many Georgia construction contractors work on projects that include some sort of federal money. When this happens, it is essential for general contractors to ensure that workers are paid for the work they do -- both their employees and the employees of any subcontractors used on the job. Otherwise, the general contractor could find itself in violation of at least one wage and hour law, which could cost the company a significant amount of money.
Sources indicate that a large percentage of Georgia’s employment lawsuits are in connection to the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). A recent decision from the United States Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit -- which is the federal appeals court for Georgia, Florida and Alabama -- could affect many of those claims. According to the 11th Circuit, arbitration is allowable in a wage and hour complaint.