The Fair Labor Standards Act protects workers by requiring that they receive the proper pay for the number of hours worked. Under this federal law, employees in Texas and elsewhere that work more than 40 hours per week are required to receive overtime pay. Often, a team member is misclassified as an independent contractor instead of an employee, and if designated as such, the worker is not eligible for that type of compensation. When this happens, a worker may miss out on a significant amount in their paycheck.
A storage worker claims that she was improperly classified as an independent contractor when she should have been designated as an employee. She asserts that she was not adequately paid for her demanding work environment. Her job required that she be available for work 24 hours per day, seven days per week. She claims that the cycle of not having any help and being on-call went on for over 10 years.
The woman filed a federal lawsuit in Texas against the company, claiming 4,000 hours of unpaid overtime that she accrued during her tenure with the storage company. She alleges that the company classified her as an independent contractor so that she would not be eligible for the overtime she worked. This classification would also cause her to be ineligible to receive benefits.
If an employee makes sacrifices to work longer than 40 hours, he or she is entitled under the FLSA to be compensated with overtime pay. Texas workers that are not receiving correct payment may gain by researching their options about filing a claim. An employee can seek reimbursement for unpaid overtime and employment benefits as well as court and legal fees.
Source: The Southeast Texas Record, Smith County woman alleges payment due for 4,000 unpaid overtime hours, Michelle Keahey, Dec. 26, 2013