Overtime hours are those hours that are worked in excess of a regular workday. Generally, overtime is paid at a higher rate than regular hours. Employers often require employees to work extra hours in order to meet production deadlines or to cover for absent employees.
However, for one reason or the other, several employees refuse to pay their staff for the extra hours they put in. In fact, some employees may be threatened with dismissal for refusing to work overtime for free. This is against Illinois wage laws.
In other instances, some employers decide to pay a lower-than-is-legal fee for the overtime hours their employees work. This, too, is against the law.
In Illinois, overtime hours are hours worked in excess of the standard 40-hour workweek. If you work more than 40 hours in a week, your employer is required to pay you 1.5 times your regular rate of pay for all hours worked over 40. If your employer fails to do this, you can take legal action to recover the unpaid overtime wages.
To start, calculate how much money you are owed in overtime wages. This can be done by multiplying the number of overtime hours you worked by 1.5 times your regular rate of pay. Next, gather evidence to support your claim, such as time cards or payroll records.
In Illinois, most employees are eligible for overtime pay. This includes hourly, non-exempt employees, as well as those who are paid a salary. However, there are a few exceptions.
For instance, some employees referred to as exempt employees, are not entitled to overtime pay if they are executive, administrative, or professional employees. Some radio/television workers also fall under the exempt category. Employees of certain educational or residential child care institutions are also exempt employees. Additionally, outside salespeople and certain computer professionals are also exempt from overtime pay.
Finally, certain truck drivers, agricultural workers, salesmen, and mechanics may be exempt if they meet certain criteria.
There are a few methods employers may use to avoid paying overtime. They include:
a. Classifying employees as exempt from overtime pay.
b. Pay workers a fixed salary instead of an hourly wage.
c. Making employees work before they’ve been clocked in.
d. Making employees work after they’ve been clocked in.
e. Not paying them for mandatory meetings or training courses.
There are a couple of reasons why an employer may not have paid for overtime. They include:
a. An attempt to save money.
b. A lack of knowledge about overtime laws.
c. A knowledge of overtime laws, but a strong adamance to simply not pay.
d. A belief that their employees are not entitled to receive overtime pay.
e. A conviction they can get away with it; workers may fear losing their employment and hence will not complain.
First, ask your employer if they are aware that they are not complying with the law. If they are not responsive to your demands, it is suggested that you take the following steps:
If you feel that you have not been paid the overtime wages that you are owed, you may file a claim with the Illinois Department of Labor. An attorney can help you file your claim and can represent you in negotiations with your employer. If your claim is successful, you will be awarded back pay for the overtime hours that you worked.
A Chicago employee rights lawyer at North Suburban Legal Services, LLC can help you file a lawsuit against your employer for the unpaid overtime wages. The lawyer will also be able to help you negotiate a settlement with your employer if they are willing to pay what you are owed without going to court.
If an employee feels that they are not being paid the correct overtime wages, they can also contact the Federal Wage and Hour Division for assistance. An attorney will be able to help file a claim for unpaid overtime wages.
If an employee feels that they are not being paid the correct overtime wages, they may also file a civil lawsuit against their employer. An attorney can help to guide the employee through this process and ensure that they receive the appropriate compensation. The lawsuit will argue that the employer did not pay the employee the correct overtime wages, as required by law. If the employee is successful, they may be awarded back pay, damages, and attorney’s fees.
A class-action lawsuit is a type of lawsuit where a group of people, called a class, sues another person or company. The people in the class are usually all in the same situation, for example, all employees who were not paid overtime wages. This means that they have all been hurt by the same thing and want to take legal action together. This saves each individual from having to file their own lawsuit, which can be expensive and time-consuming. An attorney can help you determine if you have a valid class action claim and help you file the lawsuit.
If an employee has been fired for requesting overtime pay, they may have a claim for retaliatory discharge. Illinois law prohibits employers from discharging employees in retaliation for exercising their rights under the Illinois Minimum Wage Law. This includes requesting overtime pay. An employee who has been fired in retaliation for requesting overtime pay may be able to recover lost wages, damages, and attorneys’ fees.
Are you being paid for all the hours you work?
Our law firm specializes in helping individuals who have not been paid properly or have experienced other wage and hour violations. By reaching out to us, countless individuals have received the legal assistance they needed in order to pursue justice.
Call our Chicago wage and hour claims attorneys at North Suburban Legal Services, LLC, at 312-909-6089 for a free consultation. We can help you recover the wages you’re owed.