The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) is a federal labor law of general and nationwide application, including overtime and minimum wages. In Florida, there are also state laws governing minimum wages and unpaid wage claims.
FLSA Overtime Claims
The FLSA generally requires overtime compensation (at time and one-half the employee’s regular rate of pay) for all “hours worked” over 40 hours per week, for “nonexempt” employees. FLSA overtime cases typically seek recovery for unpaid or underpaid back wages, plus double damages (called “liquidated damages”) and attorneys’ fees and costs.
FLSA overtime claims may involve:
(1) Employers misclassifying employees as salaried and “exempt” from the FLSA’s overtime requirements and paying nothing extra for overtime hours worked;
(2) Employers failing to identify, record, or compensate all hours worked, including “off-the-clock” hours spent by employees performing compensable, job-related activities; and,
(3) Employers paying overtime at the employee’s regular rate of pay (straight time) rather than at time and one-half the employee’s regular rate of pay (overtime).
FLSA Anti-Retaliation Provision
The FLSA specifically provides that it is “unlawful for any person … to discharge or in any other manner discriminate against any employee because such employee has filed any complaint or instituted any or caused to be instituted any proceeding under or related to this Act, or has testified or is about to testify in any such proceeding.” This statute has “teeth,” and is interpreted broadly in favor of employees.
An employer who retaliates or discriminates against an employee who has filed a complaint or instituted proceedings under the FLSA is potentially subject to fines or even criminal prosecution, and the affected employee is entitled to “legal or equitable relief … including without limitation employment, reinstatement, promotion, and the payment of wages lost and an additional equal amount” plus attorneys’ fees and court costs. Punitive damages are available in appropriate cases.
FLSA Advocacy and Representation
We advocate for our clients and represent them in court in FLSA overtime and unpaid wage cases. We have represented clients in cases throughout Florida and are available to handle cases arising in the Middle and Southern Districts of Florida, including Miami, Fort Lauderdale, West Palm Beach, Stuart, Port St. Lucie, Fort Pierce, Vero Beach, Naples, Fort Myers, Sarasota, Clearwater, St. Petersburg, Tampa, and Orlando and surrounding areas. If you are in need of an advocate to represent you, feel free to contact us and provide us with the details of your matter for our consideration.