Your Right to Overtime Pay
Do you work more than 40 hours a week without overtime pay?
If so, then you may be owed thousands of dollars in unpaid overtime. New York law requires employers to pay one and one-half times your usual hourly rate when you work more than 40 hours in a workweek, unless you are considered an “exempt” employee.
There are laws that govern unpaid overtime at both the state and federal levels. Overtime in New York is anything over 40 hours in a work week. Employers in New York must pay employees a rate of 1.5 times their regular rate of pay for any hours worked over 40 hours in a given week.
You can sue your employer for unpaid overtime going back 6 years. And if your employer intentionally failed to pay the overtime rate, then you are entitled to be paid two times the amount of overtime pay you are owed.
Rights Employees Have in New York Related to Unpaid Overtime
New York employees have a right to the timely payment of wages they earn. A typical work week is 40 hours, meaning eligible employees should receive overtime pay for anything above that amount. In addition, employees who are owed overtime have a right to report the employer to the state and file a lawsuit for any unpaid wages.
You can report unpaid wages to the Attorney General’s Office or Department of Labor without retribution. Employers who cut hours or fire an employee for reporting unpaid overtime are subject to fines and further legal action. You have just two years to file a lawsuit against your employer for unpaid overtime, and New York laws allow you to seek back payment for up to six years of owed overtime.
Occupations Exempt From Overtime Pay
Some positions are exempt from overtime pay and laws in New York, including executive employees, administrative workers, and professional employees. However, these industries are still subject to minimum salaries.
Other employees who may be exempt from overtime pay in New York include taxicab drivers, outside salespeople, government employees, farm laborers, religious order members, camp counselors, and employees working for a fraternity or sorority organization.
In some work industries, overtime may be eligible, but the laws are slightly different. Tipped workers, for example, must receive at least $8.80 per hour ($10 per hour in NYC and Long Island.)
Additionally, some industries may be exempt from federal overtime laws but still eligible under New York laws. The best way to find out if you’re eligible for a lawsuit is to get in touch with us and discuss your case.
Industries Frequently Affected by Unpaid Wages
The Howley Law Firm works with employees in a wide range of industries with unpaid overtime wages. Some of the industries most at risk of unpaid overtime include:
- Construction workers
- Amusement and theme park workers
- Food services
- Guard services
- Hair, nail, and skin care services
- Janitorial services
- Landscaping workers
- Auto repair
In these industries, employment agreements may be less clear, making it difficult to understand the laws regarding overtime pay. In addition, working in one of these industries doesn’t guarantee that you’re exempt from overtime. Instead, discussing your case with an unpaid wages lawyer may be important to find out if you’re owed overtime.
How Employers Violate Overtime Laws
Unpaid overtime may look different depending on your employment type and your agreement with your employer. These are some of the most common types of unpaid wages cases our team has successfully handled:
- Misclassification: Some industries are exempt from overtime laws in New York. Some employers may intentionally misclassify an employee to avoid having to pay them overtime. Another common misclassification is labeling an employee as a contract worker but then requiring them to follow a certain schedule without proper pay.
- Failing to pay minimum wage: The minimum wage in New York is $13.20 in some places and $15.00 per hour in New York City, Long Island, and Westchester. Employers who don’t pay at least this to their non-exempt workers may be guilty of violating overtime laws.
- Failing to record all hours worked: Employers who don’t record all work tasks and hours worked may owe unpaid wages to employees. This includes failing to count on-call employees, employees working from home, or hours worked through lunch breaks.
- Not structuring overtime correctly: Employers must pay employees for overtime each week. This means they cannot legally average out an employee’s hours over two weeks to avoid paying overtime.
- Combining tips with non-eligible employees: New York employees also cannot pool tips with non-eligible employees, like non-tipped employees.
If your employer is withholding compensation you earned, it may be worth it to reach out to an unpaid wages lawyer.
Compensation Available for Unpaid Overtime
The exact amount you can receive for unpaid overtime in New York varies, depending on the details of your case. However, if your employer stole funds or underpaid you, you could be subject to the following types of compensation:
- Lost wages
- Legal fees
- Punitive fees
Employers guilty of unpaid overtime may also be subject to fines. These punitive fines are meant to punish employers for wrongdoing and prevent them from mistreating employees in the future.
Types of Unpaid Wages Cases The Howley Law Firm Handles
The Howley Law Firm works with its clients on all types of unpaid wages cases. Whether your employer improperly classified you or failed to pay you for overtime work, our hardworking lawyers are here to help. We work with unpaid overtime, unpaid salary, untimely payment, and misclassification of employment agreements.
Sometimes, unpaid overtime is also present with discrimination. We will always work with our clients to ensure fair and equal opportunity employment.
In Need of An Upaid Overtime Lawyer in New York?
If you believe you have a strong case, our team here at The Howley Law Firm will represent you on a contingency fee basis. This means that our attorneys will fight to make sure you get paid every penny that you are owed, and you will not owe us any attorneys’ fees unless you win.
Do not delay. Your claims are subject to strict time limits. Submit a contact form or call us today at (212) 601-2728 to schedule a free and confidential consultation with an experienced unpaid overtime lawyer who is familiar with employment law.