How to know if you are entitled to overtime pay

To protect workers' rights, there are state and federal laws concerning overtime pay. In the state of Texas, employers have to pay overtime if employees work more than 40 hours a week. That means if an employee workers 12 hours one day, 10 hours the next, 12 hours the following day and nothing else for the rest of the week, then he could not receive overtime. Some states work on a daily basis. 

It is important for employees to understand their rights, so they can receive overtime when they deserve it. That involves learning about the law to know when overtime is mandatory. 

The Fair Labor Standards Act

One way to tell if a company needs to pay overtime is to see if it falls under the guidelines of the Fair Labor Standards Act. Businesses must meet certain qualifying factors to fall in this jurisdiction. For starters, the business has to make at least $500,000 a year. This may mean it is not mandatory for some smaller businesses to pay overtime. However, small businesses may still have to pay overtime if they partake in interstate commerce. That means the company does business with other businesses or citizens across state lines. In that circumstance, the company would need overtime even if it made less than half a million dollars annually. 

Any exceptions

While many workers can receive overtime, there are certain positions that are exempt. For businesses that meet the above criteria to pay overtime, they may not necessarily have to pay it if an employee falls into one of these categories.

  • Babysitters
  • Criminal investigators
  • Employees on small farms
  • Employees who work at sea
  • Workers at small newspapers
  • Employees at seasonal businesses, such as ski resorts
  • Specific computer specialists
  • Independent contractors

All employees who believe they should receive overtime should bring it up with the boss first. If that does not prove effective, then legal help becomes necessary.

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