In the United States, workers’ rights are protected in part by the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). Although the FLSA establishes laws related to wage and hour requirements, many U.S. employers illegally withhold wages rightfully owed to workers. This is commonly known as wage theft.
Wage theft can take many forms – including minimum wage violations, failure to pay overtime, and employee misclassification. Failing to pay overtime (overtime amounts to at least one-half times pay for any time worked past 40 hours a week) is one of the most common wage violations.
Overtime wage theft has been reported by workers in a wide range of occupations, including waiters and bartenders, janitors and grounds workers, cooks and kitchen workers, construction workers, and more. In many cases, employers will misclassify workers – often as independent contractors – in order to avoid paying overtime.
Below are other workers who commonly report being denied overtime:
- Home health care workers – Home health care workers covered under federal overtime pay protections are entitled to one-half times overtime pay. If they are misclassified as independent contractors, employers often deny them overtime.
- Delivery drivers – Many delivery drivers have pursued lawsuits after being denied overtime pay in violation of federal or state laws. This is often a result of employee misclassification.
- Limo drivers – Limo drivers and other similarly employed professional drivers – including Uber and Lyft drivers – are classified as independent contractors, despite the fact that they are often common law employees and entitled to overtime.
- Satellite / cable installers – Satellite and cable installers – including those who work for subcontractors – may be misclassified as independent contractors and as a result are not given the same protections as traditional employees, including overtime. Often, installers will spend a great deal of time traveling between jobs or waiting for jobs without pay.
- Casino floor managers – Many casino employees are not paid overtime despite working significantly more than 40 hours per week. This is often because they are misclassified as exempt from overtime regulations.
- Exotic dancers – Management will often misclassify exotic dancers (or strippers) as independent contractors although often they qualify as common law employees. As an employee, they are entitled to certain protections, which includes overtime.
Kelley | Uustal is committed to protecting the rights of workers who have been denied overtime and other protections under the Fair Labor Standards Act. If you believe your employer may have misclassed you as an independent contractor and is unlawfully denying you overtime wages, our legal team is available to personally review your case free of charge.