4 Things Every Retail Employee Should Know About Overtime Compensation

Galvin B. Kennedy
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Galvin Kennedy is a founding partner of Kennedy Hodges. He focuses his practice to overtime and wage claims.
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For many people across the country, working in retail is a way of life. The hours are often long and the jobs can be stressful. When these employees work more than 40 hours per week, they also may very well be entitled to overtime compensation under the Fair Labor Standards Act. When this does not happen as it should, a lawsuit may result.

4 Need to Know Facts About Overtime Pay

If you work in retail and work overtime, it is important to remember the following guidelines:

  1. If you work in a retail store and your employer has you do work while you’re not on the clock and is not paying you for it, you may have a claim for compensation. As long as you are a non-exempt employee under the Fair Labor Standards Act, your employer is required to pay you overtime whenever your work hours exceed 40 hours in a week. The “hours that you work” includes doing such activities as waiting on customers, working when you are supposed to be taking a break or eating a meal, and waiting inside the store while your manager closes up for the night. If you are required to wait or to work during these times, your employer may owe you unpaid overtime compensation. Some employees may make the mistake of thinking that it is not worth pursuing a claim for compensation over this type of time because it may seem trivial. However, it is amazing how quickly a few minutes each day can add up over time. You may find that you are owed a significant amount of money.

  2. You work in a grocery store and your employer requires you to work more than 40 hours per week, but does not A Grocery Store Cashier Scanning Groceriespay you for overtime. You may have a legal claim against your employer as a result. Many retail employees, including those working in supermarkets, are non-exempt purposes under the Fair Labor Standards Act and are therefore entitled to overtime compensation when they work more than 40 hours in a week. This often includes cashiers, baggers, and clerks. If you work at a grocery store and are working more than 40 hours in a week, in many cases you are entitled to receive overtime pay at a rate that is 1.5 times that of your regular pay. It is crucial that you seek legal guidance in order to recover the unpaid compensation that you deserve.

  3. If you receive some of your compensation in the form of commission, you may still be entitled to receive overtime. Under the Fair Labor Standards Act, many employees are entitled to overtime compensation unless they are specifically exempt under the Act. One type of exemption addresses commissioned employees. However, it is important to note that in order for this exemption to apply, you must receive more than half of your pay in the form of commission. Further, your entitlement to overtime compensation may also depend on whether you are considered an inside salesperson or outside salesperson. If those criteria are not met, you may still be entitled to compensation for overtime even though you receive commission. It is important to note that your employer may misclassify you as exempt in an unintentional way. Regardless, you are still owed the unpaid overtime compensation that you did not receive.

  4. If you are a pharmaceutical sales representative, you may still be entitled to compensation. Pharmaceutical sales representatives are notoriously misclassified when it comes to overtime compensation. Often, their employers classify them as falling under the professional exemption or the administrative exemption. Both are typically erroneous. In order to be classified as an exempt employee, very specific requirements must be met under the Fair Labor Standards Act. When these standards are not met, the unpaid overtime compensation can quickly add up to thousands of dollars that is rightfully owed to you.

If you believe you have been wrongfully denied overtime compensation, it is crucial to contact a knowledgeable attorney for guidance in pursuing a legal claim. We encourage you to reach out today for a free consultation at 855-947-0707.


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