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FLSA Off The Clock Violations
Federal and state laws are in place to protect both businesses and employees. However, not all workplace laws apply to every business and employee; and, what’s more, state laws vary. Generally speaking, though, if an employer asks or allows an employee to work off the clock, they are violating labor laws. This is because the Fair Labor Standards Act (or FLSA), which applies to the majority of workers in the U.S., requires employers to pay employees overtime for any hours worked over 40 hours per week if they are classified as “nonexempt.”
Therefore, nonexempt employees can’t be asked to work off the clock. Working “off the clock” is any work done for an employer which is neither compensated nor counted toward a worker’s weekly hours for overtime purposes.
Common Instances of Working Off The Clock
- Unpaid preparation or “pre-work” duties including warming up a vehicle, loading or unloading, transferring equipment, setting up or preparing a worksite, among others.
- Unpaid post-shift work like clean up or helping customers
- Unpaid administrative work
- Wait time for jobs to begin, waiting for assignments or tasks
- Taking home work to work on it after hours or reworking a project
- Returning work-related phone calls after work hours are over
- Clocking out but continuing to read work emails and/or review documents
- Completing training during non-work hours
- Traveling from one workplace to another during the same workday
Since off the clock work is often illegal, employees may be able to recover back wages for unpaid hours or unpaid overtime. Because the rules governing workers are clearly stated by the FLSA, many employees are awarded these damages. Employees may also be able to recover attorney’s fees if they win their claim for back pay.
Even if an employer or employee has good intentions, neither can choose to ignore the protections established in the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). If a violation of the FLSA occurs, the law enables employees to get wages and overtime pay owed to them as far back as three years. It is an employer’s responsibility to control off-the-clock work, and they must enforce the rules they set. If you or someone you know is owed back pay, assert your right to be paid for all of the time you worked because you earned it. Contact Whitfield, Bryson & Mason today to find out how we can help.
Whitfield Bryson & Mason
Our trial lawyers were specifically chosen for the depth of their experience and the breadth of their knowledge. Among the group are attorneys who have been recognized for excellence by industry associations and have gained national recognition for significant victories in challenging cases.
John Whitfield has been significant in his management of a suit involving the death of my son in a motorcycle accident. His professionalism, compassion, support, and especially his knowledge base in this suit has been above reproach. He has communicated well and kept all parties apprised of the status of the suit. I feel he negotiated effectively to reach the best possible settlement for my son's estate. He certainly assures his clients are represented well. I am grateful for his successfully bringing this suit to a satisfactory conclusion. In short, John's expertise has been awesome.
I am very grateful to Gary Mason for taking the initiative in filing suit against the manufacturers of defective CSST pipe. I am sure that this successful litigation will now help Maryland homeowners become aware of the danger of old style CSST pipe and to let them know what steps they may take to protect themselves against those dangers. Who knows how many lives and homes may be saved as a result of his efforts. Thank you Gary Mason for your important work in this litigation. I enjoyed working with him on this effort.