Not all Florida employers pay overtime when they are required to by the Fair Labor Standards Act. This can lead to extraordinary costs for the business.
The U.S. House of Representatives approved a bill that would change the country's longstanding overtime pay regulations. As it currently stands, hourly workers in Florida who put in more than 40 hours in one week must be paid time-and-one-half their regular rate of pay for any additional hours; under the recently passed bill, workers could decide whether they want to receive overtime pay or would prefer to earn paid time off instead.
As we have previously discussed in this Broward County Employment Law Blog, several Florida counties have enacted or worked on local ordinances regarding wages and sick time. In Miami-Dade and Broward counties, ordinances exist that require companies that work with the counties to pay workers wages that are higher than the federal minimum wage. In Orange County, a bill has been introduced that would require many businesses to offer paid sick time to employees. The Florida House has now passed a bill that would prevent county governments from enacting such ordinances.
The recent spike in wage theft cases in Florida has been a frequent topic on this employment law blog. Of course, one of the most common methods of wage theft is failing to pay workers properly for overtime hours. Under the Fair Labor Standards Act, employers must pay non-exempt workers time and one half for all hours worked in excess of 40 in a week.
There is little that is more frustrating to employees than putting in your hours at work and not being properly paid. More and more South Florida residents may be feeling this aggravation as wage and overtime violations are apparently spiking across the country.
Broward County might be the first county in Florida to implement a wage theft ordinance in the aftermath of a report that called the state the 15th worst in the nation when it comes to workers' abilities to recover unpaid wages. Broward County currently has the third largest number of wage-theft cases--those that involve workers not being paid overtime or minimum wage, being forced to work off the clock, or not being paid at all--in the state.
It is very important that all Broward County employers understand how both federal and Florida state wage and hour laws effect their payroll. Sometimes, smaller businesses have trouble navigating these statutes. This is for a number of reasons including the fact that small businesses usually have an owner that must wear many hats, including those of accountant and human resources manager. Additionally, the roles can be more casual in small business or in personal contractor relationships, which can lead employment issues to fall by the wayside.
Thousands of Wal-Mart employees across the country will soon be paid back wages for overtime work. Wal-Mart, which of course has several stores in South Florida, was investigated by the U.S. Department of Labor in 2007, who found that the company violated the Fair Labor Standards Act's overtime provisions.
In our Broward County Employment Law Blog we have previously written about the Florida state and federal laws that govern wages. Generally speaking, here in South Florida employees are granted wage and overtime rights under the federal Fair Labor Standards Act.
South Florida employees are provided wage and overtime rights are under the federal Fair Labor Standards Act. This federal law requires employers to pay overtime, equal to the rate of one and one-half times regular hourly pay, to employees for each hour worked in excess of 40 hours.