Our Frequently Asked Questions Section Gives You the Information You Need to Know About

Have questions about your legal matter and are afraid to ask? If so, head on over to our FAQ section in which we tackle a variety of important topics that matter to you. Find answers to questions regarding car accidents, medical malpractice, unpaid overtime, and a variety of other legal subjects that may be affecting you. 
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  • What is the “Computer Professional Exemption?”

    If you are a California computer technician or Illinois information technology worker, your employer may have told you that you are ineligible for overtime pay because of the Computer Professional Exemption.

    Most of the time, this will be a bald-faced lie: the Computer Professional Exemption actually applies only to a small set of computer and IT professionals, those who:

    • Address and attempt to solve new types of problems every day, without using a set protocol or established guidelines; and
    • Perform tasks that require creativity and advanced problem-solving skills, such as coding or advanced system design or architecture; and
    • Either work independently or in a management position (i.e., supervising the work of other computer and IT employees)

    Even a cursory examination of this list should be enough to show that most computer and IT professionals don't even come close to meriting the Computer Professional Exemption. In California and Illinois, computer technicians are generally low-level, non-management employees who are closely supervised. They must follow an established script or protocol when discharging their duties, and often perform intensely repetitive tasks (such as troubleshooting and updating software on individual users' computers, or maintaining computer systems and networks). If they are routinely denied overtime pay in California and Illinois, then their bosses are acting illegally.

    If you are a computer or IT worker in Illinois who routinely works more than 40 hours per week and has been improperly classified as exempt, call the law firm of Kennedy Hodges LLP for a free consultation. Our employment and wage attorneys represent workers all across the United States. Call us toll-free at 888-449-2068 today, and we will send you a FREE copy of our book, The 10 Mistakes that Can Hurt Your Wage & Overtime Claim.

  • I have left my Houston computer IT job. Can they withhold my last paycheck until I return my work equipment?

    According to the Texas Payday Law, an employer is not allowed to withhold a paycheck for work rendered, regardless of the amount or value of the employer’s property the employee is still holding. The only time wages can be withheld from an employee is when authorized by the law, when ordered by a court of law, or when the employer has written authorization from the employee agreeing to the deductions.

    The law also states that if an employer wishes to recover the property, business managers must do it through other ways: for example, by a lawsuit in small claims court, by contacting the police, or through an alternative arrangement with the employee other than withholding wages. If an employee fears she will have her check held without returning all the property, the employer is at a great advantage.

    Computer repair operators, cable installers, information technology specialists, and sales representatives are among the categories of workers who most often have disputes with former employers over business property. However, a Texas employer who withholds pay illegally can intimidate any worker in any job.

    If you believe you have had wages improperly withheld by your Houston computer employer, you should order your free copy of our book, The 10 Biggest Mistakes That Can Hurt Your Wage & Overtime Claim.

    You deserve to receive all the money that you have earned. If you are having trouble getting the money that is owed to you, you need to contact a Houston overtime attorney today at (888) 449-2068 for your free consultation. We are here to help and just a call away.

  • Does Misclassification as a Houston IT Professional Really Affect My Paycheck?

    I recently discovered that my employer has incorrectly deemed me exempt from the Fair Labor Standards Act as a Houston computer programmer. In this tough economy, I am afraid that if I breach the subject with my boss, I will be fired, since I have only been here for six months. I only work an average of five hours of overtime each week, and am paid $25 per hour. Does the misclassification really affect my paycheck that much? 

    Answer: First of all, the Houston fair wage attorneys in our office applaud you for discovering that you have been wrongly considered exempt in your position. The fact that you make $25 per hour should be a warning sign that you are not eligible for exemption, since exempted workers must make at least $27.63 per hour or $455 per week. 

    Secondly, you have every right to bring up the error on your employer’s part without having to fear that you will lose your job. Asking your boss to comply with the Fair Labor Standards Act and the U.S. Department of Labor is never grounds for firing and could be considered wrongful termination. 

    As for the misclassification affecting your Houston paycheck, you would be surprised to learn just how much money you are missing out on. In your case, for example, had it not been for your misclassification, you should have been earning time and a half your normal hourly rate for your hours worked over forty. That means that you have been missing out on an extra $12.50 per hour for five hours each week, or $62.50. Since there are 24 weeks in a 6-month period, that is a whopping $1,500 missing for over half a year’s work!

    If this sounds like a problem you are facing, too, call Houston overtime attorney, Kennedy Hodges today at 888.449.2068. We will gladly answer any questions that you have – for free – during a completely confidential consultation.